DOVER AIR FORCE BASE, Del. --
A change in policy marked the first time in approximately 20 years that the names of dedicated crew chiefs were unveiled on an Air Mobility Command C-5M Super Galaxy and C-17 Globemaster III.
“This all started for us in November last year,” said Maj. Kevin R. Scholz, 736th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron commander. “We just revamped and implemented our DCC program, and we invited Col. Safranek (436th Airlift Wing commander) and other wing leaders to the first inaugural DCC Induction Ceremony. Each DCC was able to unofficially name their aircraft and design a flag bearing their names as the DCC and assistant dedicated crew chiefs.”
Scholz mentioned that Safranek walked over to him after the ceremony and asked him about the names on the outside of the aircraft. He said that Safranek remembers a time when, as a captain and an aircraft commander, his aircraft bore his name on the outside. Safranek then asked Scholz why we can’t get names back on the outside of the aircraft.
This prompted Scholz to consult with Col. Christopher May, 436th Maintenance Group commander, to see if this was a possibility. It would have taken a change in policy to make this a reality because the regulation stated that an aircraft had to be sanitized before entering the Area of Responsibility. Since AMC airplanes are constantly transiting through the AOR, it was impossible under this guidance for DCC names to be painted on the outside of the aircraft.
May recommended to Scholz that he work with his C-5 sister squadron to submit a combined request to AMC. Tech. Sgt. Adam Olson, 736th AMXS DCC program manager, was then tasked with drafting a request and working with Tech. Sgt. Anthony Carter, 436th AMXS DCC program manager.
“One of my main goals when I became the DCC manager for the 436th AMXS was to gain the approval to have the DCC names on the nose of our aircraft,” said Carter. “I was tasked with coordinating with the 736th AMXS DCC manager and draft an Air Force Publication Compliance Item Waiver Request/Approval.”
After drafting the waiver request, Carter and Olson sent it up to their respective commanders so that it could get routed to their maintenance group commander, May. May then routed it the AMC/A4 for approval.
“Incredibly, just 10 months after Col. Safranek asked the question last November, the guidance was changed,” said Scholz. “The guidance changed to stating that if an aircraft is in the AOR for less than 14 days, it doesn’t need to be sanitized, allowing a way to keep DCC names on the outside of AMC aircraft for the first time in approximately 20 years.”
Carter recalled enlisting in the U.S. Air Force on Aug. 23, 2005. He said he was excited to get to his first base and had a lot of motivation and was ecstatic that he was going to be working on an A-10 Thunderbolt II.
“Shortly after arriving at my first duty station, Pope Air Force Base, I was made an ADCC,” said Carter. “I was completely thrilled about this new privilege and responsibility. It was instilled into me that keeping my aircraft fully mission capable was my main priority. The sense of pride I felt when I was assigned to my first aircraft was one of the best experiences of my career and will forever be instilled into my memory. That’s how I believe our Airmen feel when they are assigned to an aircraft and why it was so important to have the authority to place their names on the exterior of the aircraft.”