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128 ARW first female chief retires

Chief Master Sgt. Connie Bacik, the command chief master sergeant of the 128th Air Refueling Wing, presents an award to Chief Master Sgt. Patti Winter-Schmidt during her retirement ceremony in an aircraft hangar here Dec. 7, 2014.  Winter-Schmidt served a 38-year career in the military and was the first female to be promoted to Chief Master Sgt. at the 128 ARW.  (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Thomas J. Sobczyk/Released)

Chief Master Sgt. Connie Bacik, the command chief master sergeant of the 128th Air Refueling Wing, presents an award to Chief Master Sgt. Patti Winter-Schmidt during her retirement ceremony in an aircraft hangar here Dec. 7, 2014. Winter-Schmidt served a 38-year career in the military and was the first female to be promoted to Chief Master Sgt. at the 128 ARW. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Thomas J. Sobczyk/Released)

Col. James Locke, the vice wing commander of the 128th Air Refueling Wing, presents an award to Chief Master Sgt. Patti Winter-Schmidt during her retirement ceremony in an aircraft hangar here Dec. 7, 2014.  Winter-Schmidt served a 38-year career in the military and was the first female to be promoted to Chief Master Sgt. at the 128 ARW.  (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Thomas J. Sobczyk/Released)

Col. James Locke, the vice wing commander of the 128th Air Refueling Wing, presents an award to Chief Master Sgt. Patti Winter-Schmidt during her retirement ceremony in an aircraft hangar here Dec. 7, 2014. Winter-Schmidt served a 38-year career in the military and was the first female to be promoted to Chief Master Sgt. at the 128 ARW. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Thomas J. Sobczyk/Released)

Chief Master Sgt. Greg Cullen, the command chief master sergeant of the State of Wisconsin, presents an award to Chief Master Sgt. Patti Winter-Schmidt during her retirement ceremony in an aircraft hangar here Dec. 7, 2014.  Winter-Schmidt served a 38-year career in the military and was the first female to be promoted to Chief Master Sgt. at the 128 ARW.  (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Thomas J. Sobczyk/Released)

Chief Master Sgt. Greg Cullen, the command chief master sergeant of the State of Wisconsin, presents an award to Chief Master Sgt. Patti Winter-Schmidt during her retirement ceremony in an aircraft hangar here Dec. 7, 2014. Winter-Schmidt served a 38-year career in the military and was the first female to be promoted to Chief Master Sgt. at the 128 ARW. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Thomas J. Sobczyk/Released)

Family, friends, and fellow Airmen attended a retirement ceremony for Chief Master Sgt. Patti Winter-Schmidt in an aircraft hangar here Dec. 7, 2014.  Winter-Schmidt served a 38-year career in the military and was the first female to be promoted to Chief Master Sgt. at the 128 ARW.  (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Thomas J. Sobczyk/Released)

Family, friends, and fellow Airmen attended a retirement ceremony for Chief Master Sgt. Patti Winter-Schmidt in an aircraft hangar here Dec. 7, 2014. Winter-Schmidt served a 38-year career in the military and was the first female to be promoted to Chief Master Sgt. at the 128 ARW. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Thomas J. Sobczyk/Released)

Chief Master Sgt. Patti Winter-Schmidt is bestowed a folded flag in honor of her military service during her retirement ceremony in an aircraft hangar here Dec. 7, 2014.  Winter-Schmidt served a 38-year career in the military and was the first female to be promoted to Chief Master Sgt. at the 128 ARW.  (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Thomas J. Sobczyk/Released)

Chief Master Sgt. Patti Winter-Schmidt is bestowed a folded flag in honor of her military service during her retirement ceremony in an aircraft hangar here Dec. 7, 2014. Winter-Schmidt served a 38-year career in the military and was the first female to be promoted to Chief Master Sgt. at the 128 ARW. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Thomas J. Sobczyk/Released)

MILWAUKEE --  A retirement ceremony was held in honor of Chief Master Sgt. Patti Winter-Schmidt here at the 128th Air Refueling Wing Dec. 7, 2014.

Winter-Schmidt served in the United States military for 38 years with the majority of those years served here at the 128 ARW. During those years, Winter-Schmidt worked in several areas of the Maintenance Group including the Aircraft Maintenance section and the Aero Space Ground Equipment section.

Since 2010, Winter-Schmidt has held the position of the 128th Maintenance Group's Component Maintenance Flight Superintendent where she was responsible for sustaining the availability of personnel and aircraft to conduct conventional and emergency war order tasks.

During her time in service, Winter-Schmidt received several awards and achievements including the Air Force Meritorious Service Medal and the Richard I. Bong Award. She was also the first female to be promoted to Chief Master Sgt. here at the128 ARW and was recognized as the American Legion Auxiliary's Woman Veteran of the Year in 2005. Winter-Schmidt now plans to share her time with different veteran-aid volunteer organizations.

  "I wish the best for all the Airmen here and I hope to see everyone again in the civilian world," said Winter-Schmidt.