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  • War medal returns to family after 61 years

    No matter whether they were in Illinois, Wisconsin, or anywhere in between, Annie and Rich would see contrails in the sky from a jet plane flying high overhead, and their mother would remind them, “There’s Dad flying up in heaven. Dad’s watching.” Ann J. Ward was just 2.5 years old and Richard L. Ward II only 3 months old when their father perished in an F-84D Thunderstreak crash on Runway 31 of what is now the 182nd Airlift Wing at the General Wayne A. Downing Peoria International Airport. Circumstance stole their chance to grow up with their father when his aircraft failed to reach safe flying speed, causing it to collide with terrain during a drill-weekend training flight.
  • Family, employers help keep Peoria Air Guardsmen always on mission

    The National Guard Bureau says that success in serving with the Guard is like a three-legged stool made up of the service member, the family and the civilian employer. If one of the legs can’t support the stool, the entire structure could collapse. For Airmen with the Illinois Air National Guard’s 182nd Security Forces Squadron, that support is vital. For one weekend a month, two weeks a year and often much more, they put on the uniform of the United States Air Force and train to be called upon at any time, anywhere.
  • Peoria Air Guard family celebrates holidays together

    Holiday cheer filled the 182nd Airlift Wing hangar Dec. 3 during the annual Christmas party. Airmen, families and community members came to share in the festivities, including snacks, crafts, games, music, children’s dog tag printing by the Peoria Vet Center, toys for the children and a visit from Santa Claus. As the various squadrons took formation and the Air National Guard Band of the Midwest played Christmas songs, Col. William Robertson, commander of the 182nd Airlift Wing, started commanders call by recognizing Airmen, including the award of 14 Community College of the Air Force degrees and four Meritorious Service Medals.
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