The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Running tribute

 

July 22, 2011



Courtesy photo: Henry Serrano About 60 Air Commandos participated in the run July 15 in honor of Maj. Gen. John Allison, who is considered the father of Air Force Special Operations.

Cannon Connections

Cannon Air Force Base non-commissioned officers ran a 5k in their uniforms July 15 in honor of Maj. Gen. John Allison, who is considered the father of Air Force Special Operations.

Allison was chosen in 1943 by Gen. Henry Arnold, then head of the Army Air Forces, to serve as deputy commander of the First Air Commando Group in the China-India-Burma theater, according to the U.S. Air Force website.

He flew B-25s, P-51s, C-47s, light planes, and gliders. He was also personally responsible for the 1st Air Commandos getting the first helicopters for combat, according to the site.

Sgt. Henry Serrano, a member of the 27th Special Operations Wing Civil Engineering Squadron, said Chief Master Sgt. Matthew Caruso fathered the idea for the run as a time when the NCOs of Cannon could come together to raise pride and re-energize.

“The people who participated, they looked very enthusiastic. When they came back, you could see they changed. They went through the pain of the run together and they knew there was a purpose for it. We were doing this for AFSOC (Air Force Special Operations Command). We were getting back to the roots of being an NCO and what it means,” Serrano said. “They were sweaty and tired but they did it as a team. They felt the camaraderie.”

Serrano said NCOs are the leadership of the Air Force.

“We have a special role in the Air Force,” he said. “The run allowed us to emphasize we’re leaders. The younger airmen are looking to us for guidance and mentorship. (The run allowed us) to refocus on how we’re leading the Air Force today.”

Airmen 1st Class Geoffrey Rahn was one of 60 to participate in the 5k.

“It was interesting,” he said. “It was more difficult than normal but I run a lot.”

Rahn, who said he is nearing deployment, said he enjoyed the chance to honor Allison.

“Everyone seemed really motivated to do the run in his honor,” he said.

 
 

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