'Can-do' attitude, 'can-do' pride

  • Published
  • By Maj. Vincent Casquejo
  • 22nd Maintenance Squadron commander
Each of the more than 350 Airmen of the 22nd Maintenance Squadron, together with our partners in the 931st Maintenance Squadron, plays a vital role in providing "Superior Warfighter Support" for the 22nd Air Refueling Wing.

The foundation of this support is our squadron motto of "Can-do." This statement is both the motto and creed of the 22nd MXS and verbalizes our shared commitment and vision to provide combat-ready aircraft, support equipment and Airmen to combatant commanders world-wide.

It is emblazoned on the 22nd MXS squadron shield and throughout the unit as a reminder of our duty to accomplish the mission despite difficult circumstances. This is because providing mobility air forces is what our service and nation expect from us.

Ready Mobility

The 22nd MXS contribution to "Ready Mobility" is immeasurable yet multifaceted. In addition to a variety of other duties, the 22nd MXS is responsible for the maintenance, repair and inspection of the 22nd ARW's KC-135 Stratotankers.

The unit is also responsible for maintaining, repairing and inspecting almost 500 pieces of aerospace ground equipment that is required to support maintenance and operations.
It would take an encyclopedia to list all of the specific duties that the 22nd MXS and its five flights perform. These flights include the accessories flight, fabrication flight, aerospace ground equipment flight, precision measurement and equipment laboratory flight and maintenance flight.

Despite having different responsibilities, the Airmen of the 22nd MXS band together to support the wing's mission. 

Airmen of the 22nd MXS from 11 different career fields come together to support the wing home-station mission. The unit also deploys in support of various on-going operations and exercises worldwide. Over the last 12 months, more than 140 Airmen deployed to almost every U.S. combatant command for a total exceeding 10,000 deployed days while still supporting local flying and Headquarters Air Mobility Command taskings.

Ready Base

The 22nd MXS contributions to a "Ready Base" are varied. While installation support is not the unit's main mission, we do provide services to various base agencies as needed.

Whether it's portable lighting for aircraft, providing installation security for cargo preparation during exercises and contingencies or maintaining the base's various aircraft static displays, the 22nd MXS supports Team McConnell.

Ready Airmen and Families

One of the tenets of leadership is "mission first, people always." This is a belief that I share with all of our new Airmen as they in-process into the 22nd MXS.

Our Airmen know that without the mission there would be no people and that there will be times where they will have to sacrifice their personal lives in order to accomplish the mission.

However, in the intervening periods when the operations tempo slows, our focus is ensuring that we take care of our Airmen and families so that they are prepared and able to provide this sacrifice when called upon.

Over the past 10 months we focused on taking care of our Airmen through a number of programs and initiatives, despite the challenge of training more than 100 personnel in with the numerous on-going deployments and a dramatic reorganization of the KC-135 Isochronal Process. Despite these challenges, the Airmen of the 22nd MXS are committed to the effort because trained Airmen are the foundation of providing mission ready aircraft to our aircrews.

In addition to focusing on our Airmen, the 22nd MXS is dedicated to supporting our families through the Key Spouse Program and the unit Spouses' Club. We recently expanded our network of key spouses to ensure that the needs of our deployed families are met. In the future, our goal is to expose our spouses to more of the squadron and the wing mission through recurring events. Programs and events are invaluable to our families and assist them in understanding their loved one's roles in the Air Force mission.

In closing, the men and women of the 22d Maintenance Squadron are proud to serve the base and the local community. Like every squadron on-base and throughout the Air Force our Airmen's operations tempo is fierce. Despite competing priorities and ever-increasing duty commitments, our Airmen make the mission successful with the resources available. "Can-do" attitude, "can-do" pride! It does make a difference.