Airmen of the 932nd,
What a year 2018 was for the 932nd Airlift Wing! Although I officially joined your wing less than 60 days ago, I have been working closely with Colonel Smith and many of the support agencies that you all offered my Airmen as I served as the Commander of the 954th RSS in U.S. Transportation Command. I have been touched by your passion to serve, your commitment to excellence, and your love for your fellow Airmen. Several months ago, I attended a memorial service of a 932nd Airman that passed away, and I was touched by the love that the grieving Airmen had for their teammate. I’ve also attended deployment send-off and return parties, and was amazed at the production and involvement of the entire wing in support of the 932nd AW Airmen that were heading down range.
Your 932nd Operations Group has the reputation of operating the C-40C aircraft better than any other organization on earth, and the 932nd Maintenance Group is directly responsible for the reliability rate that we enjoy and boast about! Our AES is certainly one of our greatest treasures, since they are entrusted with bringing our wounded home (and they do it better than any other AES)! We all exist to support the Combatant Commanders and ultimately, the warfighter! Our Security Forces Squadron recently reminded the SWA AOR that our cops are the best in the Air Force and our Civil Engineering Squadron made such an impact during their deployment that they brought home countless decorations and unit/individual awards. Our support functions, groups, squadrons and flights do a terrific job keeping us ready to deploy! 2018 was a huge test for the 932d and you were ready for the challenge. Our Med Group, LRS, Wing Staff, Airmen Family Readiness and Force Support Squadron were directly responsible for making sure we met the call! WELL DONE!
I can’t say enough about Colonel Ray Smith and his wife, Stephanie. I have never witnessed a husband and wife team that embraced the Wing Commander position more than the Smith duo embraced and cherished leading your wing. After watching Colonel Smith execute his leadership style, I knew that I wanted to become his Vice! He always puts his Airmen first. Mrs. Stephanie Smith is a special person that truly embraces being kind and always helping others. We are so lucky to have her as part of our family. We wish Ray, Stephanie, Andrew and Sarah good luck on their next adventure! We will miss you.
Throughout this email I have been referring to the 932nd Airlift Wing as YOUR wing. From here on out, it is OUR Wing. I am honored to join the 932nd AW and humbled to have the chance to take the guidon from Colonel Smith as he departs for USTRANSCOM. I am not going to try to REPLACE Colonel Smith. Colonel Smith was an outstanding Commander that is not replaceable. I am not his replacement, but I am his interim successor. I know that I will have to earn your trust, but I am confident that I will accomplish that by taking care of you and your families. I am a firm believer in taking care of the Airmen, and sitting back and watch them execute the mission.
Chief Gilmore and I remain accessible to each and every one of you. Since I am “the new guy”, I have asked Chief Gilmore to bring me around to each of the work centers, squadrons, shops, and the flight line, to meet each of you. My goal is to personally meet each of you no later than close of business of the March UTA. That is a lofty goal, but one that is very important to me. I am going to need your help! Don’t be shy. If you see me around Scott Air Patch and we haven’t met yet, please introduce yourself.
932nd Airlift Wing, expect no changes in our strategic vision and guidance. I completely trust our group and squadron commanders and senior ARTs. We have an outstanding officer corps and a top notch Chief’s Group. Our SNCO corps is strong and our Airmen are talented and energetic to execute the mission!
All that being said, we have work to do. It is our absolute responsibility to remain ready! It is why we are wearing the uniform and why the 932nd Airlift Wing exists. I challenge each of you to make this wing better than you found it. We have a UEI Capstone in a little over a year and readiness exercises in 2018. All this while we are still welcoming home our warriors from the AOR. Our IGI Team is working hard to challenge us and to make sure that we comply with all AFIs. Oh yeah, I like to work hard, but I like to play hard too! I hope to have some fun with all of you on and off base.
Thank you for all you do for our 932nd Airlift Wing, the Air Force and our Nation! I’d like to also thank you for welcoming the Cruff Family into the 932nd Wing! My wife, Sommer, looks forward to meeting each of you in the near future. I promise to continue to lead us to the next level and always take care of our most valuable resource, YOU!
Colonel Mike Cruff
Commander, 932nd Airlift Wing