The Airman Ministry Center gets a makeover

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Colby L. Hardin
  • 22nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
Two Airmen of the 22nd Maintenance Group are making aesthetic improvements to the Airman Ministry Center, or the "Den" at McConnell Air Force Base, Kansas.

Airman 1st Class Charlotte Bertoch, 22nd Maintenance Squadron iso-crew chief, and Airman Zachary Orten, 22nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron crew chief, are painting a mural on the walls of the Den.

"The wall seemed a little bare," said Bertoch. "It needed more personality, so we volunteered to spice it up."

Bertoch, who enjoys painting regularly, jumped at the chance to show off her skills in a place where a lot of Airmen would be able to appreciate it while unwinding from a long work-day.

Before they embarked on the project, they solicited ideas from users of the Den.

The Airmen who volunteer at the Den have been searching for new ways to get more people interested in hanging out in at the Den and painting a mural was an idea that was brought up.

"We asked around to find out what other Airmen would like to see," said Orten. "They said they wanted something that didn't remind them of work."

With so many ideas to pick from, the two Airmen brainstormed on how to better beautify the three walls in the room. They came up with the idea of one wall painted with a silhouette of the Statue of Liberty, and the other half of that wall would have an abstract picture of the American flag, while the other two walls will be filled with movie posters and squadron shields.

"We went over a couple of ideas," Bertoch added. "We went with the ones that had the least negative reviews and that everyone would agree on."

"We chose the Statue of Liberty because it pretty much symbolizes freedom." added Orten.

Before the start of the mural, the Airmen had to get their ideas approved by the Chaplains and base leadership, which was no problem.

"The ideas were approved within five minutes of us briefing leadership," said Orten. "The chaplains thought it was awesome, he was very impressed."

So far, Bertoch and Orten have put more than 15 hours of work into the mural. With varying work shifts, it can be difficult for the both Airmen to simultaneously work on the wall at the same time. Typically Orten comes in to sketch the pictures during the afternoons and Bertoch does the painting the next morning, and both coming in on the weekends to complete what's left.

Multiple Airmen have come in from time-to-time to offer a hand painting during their spare time in hopes of getting the mural finished earlier than the projected date.

The project was officially started on Feb. 6 and is scheduled to be completed during the first week of March.

For more information on the Den and how to become a member of the Den crew, contact the base chapel at (316) 759-3562