Wing celebrates 37-year career of Vice Wing Commander

  • Published
  • By Maj. Rachel Hughey
  • 130th Airlift Wing

Col. Randy Huffman, former 130th Airlift Wing vice commander, was celebrated for his long-serving career in the Air Force during a retirement ceremony held March 3, 2018 at McLaughlin Air National Guard Base, Charleston, W.Va.

Col. Mike Cadle, current 130th Airlift Wing vice commander, presided over the ceremony and extolled Huffman’s work at the 130th AW and described his many contributions to the state during his time in the Guard.

“Randy was a part of our success here at the 130th Airlift Wing,” remarked Cadle. “We wish you well and we will miss you.”

A native of Charleston, Huffman began his career in the Air Force on his birthday Dec. 7, 1980.  After graduating from Basic Military Training in July 1981, he was assigned to the Mobile Aerial Port Squadron (MAPS) until March 1988 when he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Aerial Port Squadron.  During this time, MAPS was attached to the 22nd Air Force and the squadron put in for the Outstanding Unit Award and won it three years in a row for 1985, 1986, and 1987.  In 1990 he was appointed Commander of the 130th Services Flight where he held command until 1998 when he was selected as the Aerial Port Commander.  In 2008 he was assigned as the Mission Support Group Commander.  He was appointed to his current position of Vice Commander in 2015.

Huffman was awarded two Legions of Merit for his 37 years of service as well as an American Flag flown over the Capitol in his honor. Huffman presented his wife with a dozen red roses as a symbol of his love and appreciation of her support through the years. 

Chief Master Sgt. Brian Pritt presented a shadow box and other mementoes on behalf of the Wing and 130th Aerial Port Squadron.

The departing colonel shared his heartfelt thankfulness with the attendees of his ceremony saying, “I still feel young even after 37 years.  I’ve enjoyed serving and appreciate Col. Ryan giving me the opportunity to help change the culture of the wing in bringing us back to our heritage.”

He admitted he thought about getting out after his first few years and his mentors and leaders basically said, “That’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard!”  Needless to say he took their advice and made a long career serving as a traditional Guardsman until recently coming on board full-time as the Vice Commander.

He spoke to the members in attendance saying, “Appreciate what you have here at the Guard…some of the best friends you will ever have are here because of our common bond.” 

Huffman closed by thanking his immediate family and Guard family in attendance.  He said, “Don’t ever forget you have tremendous credibility being in the Guard, the people (of the state) trust you as Guard members.”