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Cannon awarded for nation's best maintenance


The 27th Fighter Wing Maintenance Group at Cannon Air Force Base has won the 2003 Daedalian award, Air Combat Command announced in a news release Tuesday morning.

“Winning this award is the culmination of a year-long effort by 1,800 of the finest maintainers in the Air Force,” said Col. Mark Atkinson, 27th Maintenance Group commander.

“It was a team effort from our lowest ranking airman, working 12-hour shifts when the mission demanded it, to four of the finest maintenance squadron commanders ever assembled in one location.”

The Daedalian award is given to the unit judged by Air Combat Command to exhibit superior aircraft maintenance practices through innovation, mission accomplishment, effective use of resources and quality of life improvements.

Cannon was a finalist with Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma and Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in North Carolina.

“This just proves that the 27th Maintenance Group continues to be head and shoulders above everyone and our year-long maintenance record clearly set us apart from the rest of the command,” Atkinson said.

“This was the first time Cannon has been nominated for this award, therefore our first time to be a finalist, and I couldn’t be prouder of these hard-working, motivated individuals,” said Col. Robert Yates, 27th Fighter Wing commander.

Earlier this week, Atkinson said Cannon has shown a 20 percent improvement in mission-capable rates for its entire fleet of F-16 aircraft, and a 19 percent improvement in its not-mission-capable rates.

This came about despite the loss of a quarter of the maintenance group, which was deployed to Iraq earlier.

Winning the award, he said, means “we hope to be able to attract the best and brightest maintainers” to Cannon Air Force Base.


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