442d Fighter Wing holds 2018 Family Day

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Joseph Walter
  • 442d Fighter Wing
The 442d Fighter Wing, an Air Force Reserve unit at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo., held its annual Family Day event on Sunday, September 9th, 2018 at Ike Skelton Park here.  

Over 1,500 Reserve Citizen Airmen and their family members were treated to pastalaya, barbeque, a petting zoo, horse-drawn carriage rides, live music and a host of games for kids. 

Lt. Col. David Black, the 442d Maintenance Group commander said, “From previous bases, the participation at this one was by far the most I have ever seen.”

This year, the wing held its first-ever cardboard boat regatta on Ike Skelton Lake here.  There were four contestants, with “Da Hawg” emerging the clear winner.  “Da Hawg” was manned by Master Sgts. Amanda Spieker and Kimberly Levy of the 442d Fighter Wing Staff.  This regatta is expected to expand at next year’s family day.  

“Next year I am expecting there to be some very artistic boats and very sophisticated boats,” said Black.  

Annually, the wing puts a lot of effort and planning into having family day events.  The project officer for this year’s event was 1st Lt. Nicholas Dailey.  He led a team of wing volunteers and over 60 Junior ROTC cadets from three local high schools.  Brent Kirksey, a senior at Warrensburg High School and the son of Master Sgt. Jim Kirksey in the 442d Maintenance Group, led cadets in assisting with managing logistics and ensuring the safety of children.  

The importance of having family day events is twofold.  It is a small token of gratitude to all Airmen for their hard work and sacrifices throughout the year, and a way to thank family members who support them and for their many sacrifices as a dependent of a Reserve Citizen Airmen.   

“It is a very good morale building event and good for family members to come out and see a little of what we do,” said Black.