128th Air Refueling Wing awarded seventh Air Force Outstanding Unit Award
By Tech. Sgt. Meghan Skrepenski, 128th Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
/ Published October 02, 2016
Milwaukee -- Major General Donald P. Dunbar, Wisconsin's adjutant general, presents the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award to Col. Daniel Yenchesky, commander of the 128th Air Refueling Wing in a formal ceremony Oct. 2, 2016 at General Mitchell Airfield, Milwaukee. This award marks the seventh time the 128 ARW has received the AFOUA in recognition of distinguished meritorious service from Oct. 1, 2014 through Sept. 30, 2015.
"At this particular time in our history if you look back at our past, that kind of narrative would not have existed for the best active duty units. To have this kind of narrative being read by a National Guard unit, speaks volumes of our role in defending this country today," said Dunbar.
"Only a small percentage of units achieve this recognition of excellence. It is particularly significant to be awarded this decoration in a time of challenging operations tempo while working through transformation with today's limited resources." said Col. Daniel Yenchesky, commander of the 128 ARW.
"The teamwork and commitment to get the job done is what allows us to excel and to be the example." said Yenchesky. "This recognition is not only a testament to the work done in 2015 but to the decades of hard work by the men and women of the 128th Air Refueling Wing. All the past members of our organization serve as a foundation to push us up to that level of excellence."
During the time period covered for the award, the 128 ARW accomplished its mission with a maximum degree of operational readiness, successfully flying the KC-135 Stratotanker aircraft on 681 sorties with 2800 mishap-free flying hours while participating in four major deployments. Supporting approximately 147 deployment tasks over 8163 total days overseas, the 128 ARW provided 13.1 million pounds of fuel to aircraft for Operations FREEDOM SENTINEL and INHERANT RESOLVE, ensuring mission capabilities were met in a high operations tempo environment.
As a partner to the community militarily, the 128 ARW Honor Guard professionally executed 155 military funeral honors and 32 events requiring Honor Guard support, resulting in a savings of more than 79 thousand dollars to the Scott Air Force Base Honor Guard.
Wing members maintain community support through volunteerism with groups such as Habitat for Humanity, Stars and Stripes Honor Flights, Hunger Task Force, Project Concern, Coats for Kids, and the Zablocki Veterans Affairs Medical Center, solidifying the crucial partnership between the 128 ARW and the local community in the greater Milwaukee area.
"There are people in the United States and around the world, whom you will never meet, that appreciate what you do and have benefited from your integrity, your talent, your blood, sweat and tears," said Dunbar. "I just want to salute you and tell you how proud I am. Congratulations to the 128th Air Refueling Wing on a job well done."
Previous Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards presented to the 128 ARW: June 5, 1967 to May 10, 1968; May 11, 1968 to Dec. 31, 1976; July 1, 1988 to June 30, 1990; Sept. 1, 1992 to Aug. 31, 1994; April 15, 1995 to April 14, 1997; and Aug. 1, 1997 to July 31, 1999.