Airmen Bestow Highest Enlisted Honor
(September 13, 2010)
|RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany (9/9/2010 - AFNS) -- Airmen from
across U.S. Air Forces in Europe came together to induct
USAFE Commander Gen. Roger A. Brady into the Order of the
Sword during a ceremony here Sept. 8.|
As the 19th recipient of USAFE's Order of the Sword, General
Brady was given the highest honor someone can receive from
the Air Force's enlisted corps.
"I'm touched that you all are here tonight," the general
said. "While I am the grateful recipient of this wonderful
recognition, I'm much more comfortable talking about what I
think this award symbolizes to me, and that's really about
Retired Chief Master Sgt. Robert D. Gaylor, a former chief
master sergeant of the Air Force attended the ceremony to
honor General Brady.
"This is a very special evening for both you and for me,"
Chief Gaylor said. "General Brady, what a great night that
the Airmen of your command, the enlisted members, have
chosen to honor you with this Order of the Sword
Gen. Roger A. Brady and Chief Master Sgt. Pamela Derrow pass under the Arch of Sabers during an Order of the Sword ceremony Sept. 8, 2010, at Ramstein Air Base, Germany. As the 19th recipient of USAFE's Order of the Sword, General Brady was given the highest honor someone can receive from the Air Force's enlisted corps. General Brady is the U.S. Air Forces in Europe commander. Chief Derrow is the USAFE command chief.
U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Desiree Esposito
ceremony. This may very well be the highlight of
your career, and a night you will never forget."
Chief Gaylor spoke to the "mess," describing the four
differences between Airmen of his era and Airmen of today --
training, technology, tribe (family) and trust -- relating
them back to General Brady.|
"This man we honor tonight has been instrumental in
promoting and advancing all four of those," the chief said.
He went on to thank the general and counted him as a "man
among men, and leader among leaders" who has been "helping
make us a much better Air Force."
As a bagpipe echoed through the room, the USAFE ceremonial
sword was bestowed upon General Brady with a reading of the
proclamation and citation.
Chief Master Sgt. Michael J. Grimm, the duty sergeant for
the evening, read the proclamation and relayed the type of
leadership General Brady embodies.
"Whereas you by your dynamic leadership, your sincere
personal concern for the well-being of all enlisted men and
women and your continuous adherence to the highest standards
of personal integrity, you have rekindled the spirit and
resolve of the U.S. Air Forces in Europe enlisted force and
have guided them upward to new and greater magnitudes of
duty, honor, country," he said. "And whereas under your
outstanding leadership, U.S. Air Forces in Europe have
reached new heights of performance, combat readiness and
devotion to cause."
When the USAFE commander took the stage, he thanked those in
attendance for being there to commemorate the event and
described several key points of enlisted heritage that have
impacted and shaped today's enlisted force, stating a big
contrast between the eras.
"Your contribution has been substantially different than
that of enlisted Airmen in previous conflicts," he said.
"For the first time, large numbers of Airmen have found
themselves engaged directly with enemy forces on the ground.
And you have invariably performed with courage, honor and
dignity. You are preserving freedom today and ensuring it
The command pilot with more than 3,100 flying hours praised
Airmen throughout USAFE, from Incirlik Air Base, Turkey, to
RAF Mildenhall, England, as they have continued to support
humanitarian efforts and overseas contingency operations.
General Brady presented the USAFE enlisted corps with a
reproduction of a drawing he created after seeing a
newspaper picture of an Iraqi woman leaving a polling booth
after Iraq elections in 2005.
The Order of the Sword ceremony was started by
noncommissioned officers in the Middle Ages to honor their
leader by pledging loyalty to him through the presentation
of a sword. The sword stood as a symbol of "truth, justice
and power rightfully used."
After lying dormant for some time, the ceremony was revived
by the Air Force enlisted corps in 1967.
By USAF Sr. Airman Amanda M. Dick
86th Airlift Wing Public
Air Force News Service
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