Commander's holiday message

by Lt. Gen David Fadok, Air University commander and president and Col. Trent Edwards, 42nd Air Base Wing Commander

12/14/2012 - MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Al  -- The holiday season means different things to different people. It means celebrating with family and friends, often traveling to do so. It also means being thankful.

We are thankful to be on your team, and we are thankful for the hard work of everyone who is a part of our Maxwell-Gunter team. Your dedication has brought to close another successful year in 2012.

Together we have focused on producing future Air Force leaders, mission readiness and operating a world-class installation that serves as the "Best Hometown in the Air Force."

A successful 2013 begins by ending 2012 on a safe note. As we enjoy time off during the holidays, keep in mind the theme of the Air Force's holiday safety campaign - Safe-n-Sound, All Year Round.

For the past seven years, Team Maxwell-Gunter has joined Air Education and Training Command in being fatality-free during the holiday season. A track record like that isn't built without commitment, commitment that starts with leadership involvement and filters throughout our entire organization.

Besides applying smart risk management in our activities and using common sense in our travels, continuing to foster a culture of wingmanship is key to taking care of all our Airmen, whether they be uniformed or civilian.

During our Wingman Days this fall, we emphasized that we are all members of a team, working together, taking care of each other and accomplishing our mission. There is perhaps no more important time of year than the holiday season to underscore that point.

Although the holidays are a time of celebration, the season can be a difficult time for some. That's why it's so important for commanders, first sergeants, supervisors and fellow Airmen to communicate and stay connected with our Airmen.

For those who might be having a difficult time during the holidays, we urge you to reach out to a friend or a co-worker who you can trust. Helping agencies like mental health, the military family life consultant and the chaplain are confidential and trusted resources available 24/7. There are people here to support you, people who will listen to you and not judge you, people who can help you if you need them.

Throughout the holidays, we ask you to keep in mind all of our deployed service members and their families. Being apart for the holidays can be especially difficult on our spouses and children.
Just remember that even the smallest gesture of support can mean a lot to our deployed members and their families. We encourage each of you to contact the families of your deployed members and make sure they are doing alright.

To all of our Airmen, we appreciate the sacrifices that you and your family make every day in serving our nation. Congratulations on a great 2012, and we look forward to a successful 2013. Happy holidays and season's greetings to all.