Moody Air Force Ball Celebrates Heritage, History

Staff Report From Valdosta CEO

Wednesday, September 26th, 2018

Team Moody celebrated the Air Force’s 71st birthday during the annual Air Force Ball, Sept. 15, 2018, in Valdosta, Ga.

The ball recognized the service’s inception on Sept. 18, 1947, when President Truman signed the National Security Act of 1947, which established the USAF as a separate military service.

“As a member of the world’s great Air Force, each and every day when you come to work and help to support our mission, you are writing a page in the history books for future Airmen to look back on,” said Col. Jennifer Short, 23d Wing commander. “We have a tradition of honor and a legacy of valor. We must honor our past, embrace the present, and write our future. I am inspired by you every day, and I am forever proud to serve alongside each and every Airmen.”

Guest speaker and former 23d Wing commander, retired U.S. Air Force Brig. Gen. Billy Thompson, said the ball gives attendees the ability to share the Air Force’s exceptional service and foster espirit de corps among the Airmen.

“This (Air Force) is filled with fantastic Americans. Every day they are the first to set forth to help anyone who needs it, both in and out of uniform,” said Thompson.  “We honor and celebrate the Air Force’s 71st birthday (as a part of) the most powerful and greatest military we have ever known.”

The event allowed attendees to not only reflect on the Air Force’s ability to innovate and break barriers to ‘Fly, Fight and Win,’ but it also was deeply rooted in tradition, one of the most symbolic being the cake-cutting ceremony.

Traditionally, the oldest and youngest service members are the first to cut the cake to commemorate all those who serve. This year’s honors were conducted by Airman 1st Class David Davenport, 23d Logistics Readiness Squadron A-10 parts store apprentice, and his group commander, Col. Brian Stumpe, 23d Mission Support Group commander.

“I feel like it shows the future and the past,” said Davenport. “It was pretty nerve-racking, but it was an honor because both my father and my grandfather served in the Air Force, and now this is something I can say I’ve done.”

After the ceremonial cake-cutting and final remarks, attendees continued to socialize during the night’s festivities as they made their way to the dance floor.

Amidst the shared laughs, music and dance moves, Airman 1st Class Aaron Dupell, 723d Aircraft Maintenance Squadron electronic warfare journeyman, took this as an opportunity to unite with his wingmen to celebrate the Air Force legacy.

“I liked seeing everyone as a base come together in one (setting) to be able to get to know each other better and socialize,” Dupell said. “I liked being able to get my family members down to (Moody) and expose them to the Air Force.”