Explosive ordnance community joins together to honor its fallen

  • Published
  • By Mekka Parish
  • AFCEC Public Affairs
The joint service explosive ordnance disposal community gathered May 7, to honor EOD technicians who have died in the line of duty since World War II.

"It is important to remember the families, the children, the spouses," said Maj. Gen. Timothy Green, Air Force director of civil engineers, who was among the hundreds who attended the annual memorial ceremony.   "It's part of a journey.  It's important for the men and women to get recognized for what they do when they put themselves in harm's way -- they will be remembered."

The ceremony, which took place across from the Naval School EOD Disposal at Eglin, included a 21-gun salute, wreath laying, playing of taps and a roll call for all 320 EOD technicians whose names appear on the wall. The names of six EOD specialists were added to the wall this year.

"We say that's what we signed up for, but they actually did that, did it to the best of their ability.  That's what it is about -- remembering, honoring and never forgetting," said Michael Long, EOD technician.

Air Force Chief of Staff General Mark A. Welsh III, also in attendance, offered words of comfort to families of the fallen and praised those who continue to follow the trail of those who have gone before.  These EOD specialists may have worn different uniforms, but worked and fought for a common mission, he said.

"It's a total force -- they work together, they serve down range together," Green said. "We work very hard to make sure we have common tools and equipment, so I think it's a phenomenal opportunity, but more importantly it's our responsibility that we can serve alongside our sister services."