Greatness begins with personal investment

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Vincent Lostetter
  • 71st Operations Support Squadron
Through many heroic efforts by members of the Ghostriders and other Airmen on base, I survived the first fires in the crucible. This article is part observation of what I have seen at Vance in the first year of my command of the 71st Operations Support Squadron and part vector: how I would like us to continue in the future.

I have known people in my career that could go to that dream assignment in Hawaii or Europe and be miserable. On the flip side, I have also known those folks that could make that remote desert location look like a tropical paradise.

So what is the difference other than geography? I am sure we all have different answers, but I think we would agree that great people make great assignments no matter where you sit on the map.

My welcome brief when I speak to each new group of student pilots every month goes something like this. I first ask who is from California (the greatest of states) and then throw in a couple others like Colorado and Texas. I dash their hopes of seeing sparkling oceans or majestic mountains, but my follow-up is to highlight the many great things this state offers with the gem being the community of Enid, where we have the best relationships with our city partners. 

Enid might not be where you want to be on the map, but here you will find some of the greatest people you could ever meet. It doesn't take long to establish friendships with the locals at church, school or at events downtown.

Next take a look at your flight. If it is not already full of greatness, take it upon yourself to make it great. I tell the students to step up and take the initiative, volunteer and start everything off with a smile. If great people make a great flight, think about what impact this has on making a great squadron, group and wing. 

The Ghostriders live by the motto "Always Professional," and we are not alone at Vance. Have you been to the 71st Force Support Squadron lately? Did you notice a change? I did on my last couple visits and saw a positive drive for excellence and a desire to provide the best customer service. 

Are you getting ready to deploy? Vance has made a fundamental shift in the way we deploy our Airmen. The Logistics Readiness Squadron has led this charge and made vast improvements in our mobility mindset. This is a hot item with me and I thank the many organizations on base that help provide outstanding support to get our combat warriors down range prepared and equipped and safely returned to their families.

Continue to give to and serve each other. We are a very strong team with an outstanding performance record and bright future. If you are a new arrival to Vance, welcome and jump on board. If you are a veteran to Vance, be our cornerstone and continue to build on our strength -- the men and women serving our nation. 

Oh yeah, one last request. Can anyone help me answer this question: What do you get the perfect wife for her 14th wedding anniversary?