Recruits Experience Enlistment of a Lifetime
By Capt. Bruce Hill, 4th Air Force Public Affairs
/ Published November 12, 2008
Los Angeles, Calif. -- Some folks talk up-front about the heroic role Airmen assume when the sky is falling or not.
Others, laid back, might think they're just doing their jobs. Either way, if you were to ask any one of the 19 new U.S. Air Force recruits that were sworn in at Rose Bowl Stadium on Saturday they will tell you they look forward to the careers that lay ahead of them in the Air Force.
The first few hours of the day began as Air Force recruiters and their new recruits set up a recruiting tent just outside of Rose Bowl stadium prior to the UCLA/Oregon State football game. Visitors to the tent were treated to Air Force pins, stickers and other paraphernalia, and learned about careers and life in the Air Force. The new recruits shared their anticipation with the public as the recruits would take the official Oath of Office later in the day to become join the ranks as the newest airmen basics.
"Fall in! Form up!" shouts Master Sgt. Chris McCool, a 17-year veteran Air Force Recruiter and former Basic Military Training Instructor. The recruits quickly respond, preparing themselves for the ceremony.
Colonel Jeffery Robertson, Director of Staff, Headquarters, Fourth Air Force, March Air Reserve Base, Calif., takes his place in front of the formed-up 'civilians' to give them the official Oath of Office.
With cameras rolling and football fans gathering around, the colonel called on the recruits to raise their right hands and repeat after him. Onlookers, witnessing what is more than a 230-year-old military tradition, stood silently, listening to the promise being made by each individual taking the oath.
After completing the oath, the colonel congratulated and shook the hand of each new recruit for their commitment to support and defend the Constitution of the United States, welcoming them into the Air Force family of professionals.
"It's what these kids are doing (serving in the Air Force) that allow people to do things such as come to these games and live freely at home," said Col. Robertson. "These recruits will have the chance of doing the same admirable things that many have done before them to help preserve freedom and democracy."