62nd Airlift Wing hosts Wingman Day for Airmen

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Callie Norton
  • 62nd Airlift Wing Public Affairs

The 62nd Airlift Wing at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, hosted its second Wingman Day of 2020 to empower resiliency within Airmen.

Wingman Day, which was held Nov. 20, emphasized informational awareness, accountability, and team building. With the current COVID-19 global pandemic, Wingman Day proved to be relevant now more than ever.

“This day is important because our people are important. We need a day to relax, reflect, and know what resources there are if one of our Airmen are in need,” said Master Sgt. Sherri Holmes, 62nd Operations Support Squadron Aircrew Flight Equipment superintendent, and one of the organizers for the Wingman Day festivities. “I think it’s a great way for all of us to take a pause and check in on our people. This has been an unprecedented year for all of us. It is important that we are staying engaged.”

Even with the pandemic, the organizers worked to ensure the Wingman Day was a success. They moved all Wingman Day activities virtually to ensure the Airmen health and safety. 

“If anything, COVID-19 has taught us all to be flexible and understanding,” Holmes said. “I think our team changing directions from some in-person to only online was a good decision.”

Classes included: How to Handle Virtual Education; Leadership During a Crisis; Building Communication and Managing Emotions During COVID; Airmen Helping Airmen – Suicide Awareness Panel; Get Energized with Nutrition On The Go; Home Ownership; Love is Respect – Relationships; and Keeping Up With Finances/Building For Retirement.

Senior Airman Miles Woodford, 62nd AW Administration, said Wingman Day gave the Airmen the opportunity to connect with one another.

“Through the classes, group discussions, and whatever activity going on that day, Airmen are able to learn about their peers, open up about themselves a little bit and have some fun with people that they’ll more than likely see many times in their Air Force career,” Woodford said. “Bonds are built during Wingman Days.”

Airmen also attended an all call hosted by Col. Erin Staine-Pyne, 62nd AW commander, and Chief Master Sgt. Joseph Arce, 62nd AW command chief. During the all call, Airmen had the opportunity to interact with leadership and provide feedback.

The all-call portion of Wingman Day was conducted via Zoom call and in conjunction with a Slido collaborative conference, where Airmen provided feedback in real-time by answering live polls as well as submitted their questions for the wing leadership to address directly.

During the all call, Staine-Pyne and Arce highlighted recent accomplishments throughout the wing and praised the hard work and tremendous adaptability that the wing’s military and civilian personnel have demonstrated over the past several months. 

Staine-Pyne emphasized the importance of resilience, diversity and equality, and of celebrating the value that each member of this team brings to the wing. She closed her remarks with a well-known Taoist story of a farmer and his stallion, who, when faced bouts of either misfortune or fortune, always responded “who knows what is good or what is bad?” Her message was what seems like a bad situation now may spark a better situation later.

 “We will get through this, there is hope, and I am proud of each and every one of you for the work and sacrifices you make every day,” Staine-Pyne said.