After 30 years of service, airman retires

“I would stay in the Air Force until I was 100 if they let me,” said Anderson, 49. “It’s bittersweet. I’m going to miss the people aspect of being in the Air Force, but I’m looking forward to transitioning to a new life and spending more time with the family.”

Anderson moved back to Huber Heights in July to be near his family.

“I am very excited to go back home because I still have quite a bit of family in Huber Heights and the Dayton area,” he said. “I’m ready to settle down, and I want my family to have a stable life.”

How he got involved in the military: “My dad retired from the Air Force as a master sergeant, so I’ve been affiliated with the Air Force as long as I can remember. He retired and I kind of knew I was going to live a life in the Air Force.”

What actions he performed: “I went into the (Air Force) Reserves in 1981, then I became active-duty in 1983. First, I served as an independent duty medical technician. I was trained to function as a medical provider for active duty members. Then I spent seven years as a first sergeant, which is the adviser to the commander on issues related to the welfare of taking care of our airmen. The last two jobs (I held) were as a medical group superintendent and I advised the one star general.”

The most satisfying part of his work: “Taking care of our airmen. I was actually in a position to make a difference for our airmen. I was able to take care of them medically, take care of their morale and welfare, and take care of them as a leader and a mentor.”

The most memorable moment of his service: Anderson received an Achievement Medal for helping to save the life of someone who was having a heart attack. He noticed a person exhibiting symptoms of a heart attack and transported him immediately to a hospital.

His greatest accomplishment: “My greatest accomplishment was that I was blessed enough to get promoted to the highest enlisted rank of chief master sergeant. This distinguished rank is limited to only one percent of the enlisted force. I consider this accomplishment to be my greatest because it allowed me to be a voice, an advocate and a role model for our enlisted men and women.”

What he learned: “I learned that in order to be an effective leader, you must give respect down the chain. In other words you should respect our young airmen and NCOs just as you would respect a colonel or a general officer.”

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