130th Airlift Wing adds two new Chiefs to its ranks
By Capt. Holli Nelson, 130th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
/ Published June 04, 2017
MCLAUGHLIN AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Charleston, W.Va. -- Two members from the 130th Airlift Wing, John Lowe and Patrick “Wayne” Hughes, reached the pinnacle of the enlisted rank structure by becoming Chief Master Sergeants June 3, 2017 at McLaughlin Air National Guard Base, Charleston, W.Va.
The two were promoted separately in front of their respective squadrons, family, friends and colleagues and will assume roles as chief enlisted managers for their units.
Lowe, who served as 130th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron A flight supervisor, was lauded by Col. Carla Riner, 130th Maintenance Group commander, for his service and demonstrated leadership capability.
During his career, Lowe has served in numerous maintenance capacities in all components of the Air Force – active duty, Reserve and National Guard. His broad experience on different airframes including the C 130, KC-135, and B-52 has attributed to his success in the field.
During the ceremony, he thanked his family for their support during his career in the military.
“To the outstanding personnel of the 130th Maintenance Group, I appreciate all of you. I couldn’t be here today without you,” remarked Lowe. “My career has been both challenging and exciting, not to mention forever changing. There’s always something new for us to embrace and move on. I’ve learned so much from my mentors along the way and I now stand, both proud and humbled, before you as the new Chief. I accept this responsibility and all the challenges that come with it. I will support the wing’s priorities and look forward to the future and where it may lead us.”
Hughes, who served as the 130th Security Forces Squadron operations superintendent, received words of praise from 130th SFS commander, Lt. Col. Chad Board.
“It didn’t take me very long to learn that when there’s an important task that needs to be done, he’s the man for the job,” said Board. “Characteristics like these are the reason he’s been selected to be the chief for Security Forces Squadron.”
Since joining the Air Force in 1986, Hughes has held positions on both active duty and in the ANG. He has served as an M-60 machine gunner deployed in support of Operation Desert Storm/Desert Shield as well as a squad leader and non-commissioned officer in charge of the information security program.
Hughes gave thanks to those in attendance and gave a special mention to his family members who traveled to be there for this occasion.
“It’s a big deal to make it this far,” said Hughes during his speech. “I’m not a sentimental guy, but when you think about something like this, when someone gets to make it to Chief in the Air Force, it’s a big deal.”
The Wing’s newest chiefs were presented with a replica Jeep on behalf of the 130th Airlift Wing Chief’s Council, which represents the “Jeep Chief.” The “Jeep Chief” is the newest Chief Master Sergeant on the base and is symbolic of a newly promoted individual in the military. The two new chiefs will pass the Jeep from one to the other over the course of the next few months, and then onto the next Chief when he or she is promoted.