TBAC Introduces Flights to AFSFA
AFSFA Travis Bay Area Chapter launched the Flight concept in the San Francisco Bay Area. This is a new program originating with TBAC and introduced to AFSFA at the Region 6 Workshop held 28 March 2015 in Santa Ana, CA.
Throughout the world, there are pockets of current Security Force Defenders, separated or retired AP, SP and SF members and non members. The goal of AFSFA Flights is to create opportunities for these individuals to get and stay connected with other AFSFA members by meeting regularly on an informal basis and be connected to a chartered chapter.
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Travis Bay Area Chapter
Chartered - Executive Director Visits
One of our
newest AFSFA Region 6 chapters was approved for chartering by AFSFA Board of
Directors at the Annual Meeting in Seattle. Travis Bay Area Chapter (TBAC) was
presented their charter by Executive Director, Colonel (ret) John Probst, at
their meeting on 8 Nov 14 at Travis AFB, CA.
TBAC is unique
within AFSFA in that it meets on an active Air Force installation and has taken
on the challenge of supporting multiple active duty squadrons as well as
Reserve and Guard units. All units are located at Travis AFB with the exception
of the ANG unit housed at Moffett Federal Air Facility.
by TBAC are:
60th Security Forces Squadron
349th Security Forces Squadron (Reserve)
570th Global Mobility Response Squadron (570th Contingency Response Group)
571st Global Mobility Response Squadron (571st Contingency Response Group)
Mobility Support Advisory
129th Security Forces Squadron (Air National
Guard) Moffett Federal Air Facility
Chapter Chairman James
Downey, USAFR, CMSgt (ret) stated that members struggled with the fact that it
would need to develop programs and find funds to support all the units,
including the ANG unit located 85 miles away. TBAC members are determined to
find a way to do all this.
Support functions will also
be unique because the Contingency Response Groups vary in size, have constant
deployments with multiple career specialties within each unit. Fortunately
TBAC has members of each unit attending meetings and have joined AFSFA. CRG units are unique whereas all
members have their primary specialties, yet each CRG team member is trained as
secondary Security Forces and work hand-in-hand with the SF teams when
deployed. Therefore TBAC considers all CRG members part of the same family.
Colonel Probst tries to
personally present each new charter. He served as an enlisted dog handler with TBAC
Vice Chairman Lloyd Edwards, USAF, TSgt (ret). AFSFA VP Scott Castillo is
chairman of the Sacramento Valley Chapter. Downey invited Probst to come early and extend his stay. It
would provide an opportunity for all to meet informally over a few days, enjoy
some California hospitality and talk about the future.
Probst arrived Thursday and
had dinner with Downey, Edwards and their wives. Friday morning was a business meeting with a vendor to
discuss shirts that TBAC will be offering for sale to all AFSFA members and the
general public soon. The image on the shirt is the same as the posters unveiled
at the Annual Meeting in Seattle. TBAC is also expected to sell posters.
Downey conceived the idea
for the art and worked with a local artist, Charlotte Norris, to refine it and
come up with the completed piece. Downey and Norris gifted the final art to
AFSFA, with rights to use the piece on promotional products. Once items become available, TBAC
intends to donate a percentage of the profits directly to AFSFA.
Probst, Downey and Edwards
(PDE) attended the Vacaville Business Connection (VBC) lunch meeting where
Downey and Norris's father Chris are members. VBC members were shown the poster
and Probst presented both father and daughter with AFSFA Thank You Coins.
Probst was the guest speaker and talked about AFSFA and his time in Iraq.
[Photo] Probst, Chris and Charlotte
VBC is a professional
business referral organization. Downey is working with VBC members to create a
number of workshops for the squadrons addressing common topics such as mortgage
qualifications, how to build better credit, how to understand insurance and see
through the hype and numbers. VBC members want to give back to Travis Security
Forces. VBC President Jon Scott is prior active duty SF and was commander of
the unit at Mather.
[Photo] Probst speaking at VBC
After lunch PDE, now being
called the Three Musketeers, did the Budweiser Beermaster Tour in Fairfield
where they were awarded Honorary Beermaster certificates, followed by a great
Mexican dinner and more planning.
TBAC met Saturday morning
with a strong showing and all unit commanders or their representatives present.
After the Pledge of Allegiance, Colonel Probst administered the Oath of Office
to TBAC officers. The meeting was called to order and the floor was given to
Probst to talk about AFSFA. This was followed by a presentation of a large
framed poster to each commander for their unit. Probst was wearing one of the
new T-shirts and modeled it for the group. AFSFA VP Castillo served as official
photographer. The first chartered meeting went well with everyone leaving
positive about the future.
[Photo] Probst and Major Allman, 60SFS Cmdr
Following the meeting PDE
headed for Healdsburg and enjoyed lunch at The Wurst, a favorite in the wine
country known for its grilled sausages and burgers. From there, the trio headed
for Francis Ford Coppola Winery where Probst and Edwards enjoyed some wine
tasting with Downey abstaining, playing the role of designated driver. All
enjoyed the museum part of the winery with props from movies as well as actual
Oscars and Golden Globe Awards on display.
Then a quick tour of
Sausalito and some fantastic views of the Golden Gate Bridge and the San
Francisco skyline after dark, followed by a great steak dinner (by all
accounts) at the Cattlemen's in Petaluma. Sunday was an informal off day with
Probst having dinner with Edwards and his family.
Monday started early with
Castillo joining in for breakfast at Valley Cafe in Suisun. After a hearty
breakfast they drove to Twin Sisters Gun Club, a private rifle and pistol range
where Downey is a member. Between pistols, revolvers, rifles and shotguns, the
group spent time putting lots of holes in paper, bouncing reactive targets,
and blowing up one underperforming explosive target.
[Photo] Probst and Scott Catillo taking aim
Some four hours later
Castillo headed back to Sacramento and PDE adjourned to Downey's patio for
sandwiches, refreshments and more discussion and planning. Downey's wife Jean
prepared an Italian feast for the trio at the end of the day. Dinner was
completed with a great, unlabeled, bottle of wine from a new upstart, Vince Anthony Wines.
After dinner the group
talked about the first ever Region 6 Workshop to be held in March and hosted by
the Los Angeles / Orange County Chapter and subsequently decided that they
should do all this again. They still had to show Probst the giant redwoods, San
Francisco, maybe a light house or two, Monterey and a few other things. This
could take multiple trips.
As Probst rode out of
California on that big silver bird, the last thing he saw was Downey and
Edwards huddled together making a list of places to see and things to do. And
being the ever AFSFA promoter he is, Probst whispered to them that perhaps the
Bay Area might be a great annual meeting site in the future.
Note for record - Colonel Probst serves as AFSFA Executive Director and does not use any AFSFA funds for his chapter visits. All expenses are paid by him personally.