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55th Maintenance Squadron hosts spouse’s tour

OFFUTT AIR FORCE BASE, Nebraska --

The 55th Maintenance Squadron hosted a tour for unit spouses at the Bennie Davis Maintenance Facility Feb. 17.

The overall goal of the tour was to educate spouses on what the men and women of the 55th MXS do on a daily basis and to also see how their significant others contribute to the overall mission of the 55th Wing.

“This tour started as a small gesture of appreciation that enabled our spouses to connect with our leadership team and learn more about what we do to support the wing’s mission,” said Maj. Julian Thomas, 55th MXS commander. “Spouses are the backbone of our military families and are vital to the success of our Air Force. They are silent heroes who shoulder the enormous responsibilities associated with being a military spouse.”

In a nutshell, the 55th MXS provides specialty back-shop maintenance and maintenance support including isochronal inspections, structural repair, and pneudraulic, electro-environmental, fuels and avionics systems maintenance. In addition, the unit also maintains aerospace ground equipment, munitions and supports transient aircraft and over the three hour tour, the spouses got a quick glimpse into almost all of those.

“We felt it was important for our maintenance squadron spouses to physically see what their spouses or partners do on a daily basis,” said Bekah Murphy, 55th MXS key spouse. “We often hear our spouse’s talk about their job but have never seen it physically done.”

Upon arrival, the spouses were greeted by Thomas and then toured the consolidated support flight area where they saw a hydaulic brake rebuild in process. They followed that up by seeing the non-destructive inspection area and sheet metal shop within the aircraft maintenance flight.

The tour then went to aerospace ground equipment for a B-4 operational check followed by a visit to accessories before concluding with an RC-135V/W Rivet Joint static tour.

“Each shop plays an important role to the mission here at Offutt,” Murphy said. “Whether it’s from fixing a bird strike, repairing corrosion on a plane, finding a small crack, or rebuilding brakes, I always hear about the shops but it was intriguing to see how much detail and physical labor is done in person.”

Thomas said the overall response from spouses who participated was very good.

“The tour was a very eye-opening experience for our spouses,” Thomas said. “What stands out most in my mind is they were able to see the enormous amount of work it takes to keep our jets in the air.”

And with that success, the unit plans to host more in the future.

“Due to the great feedback we received we are going to conduct tours every quarter,” Thomas said.