by Senior Airman Christopher Gross
460th Space Wing Public Affairs
11/16/2012 - BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- The
8th Space Warning Squadron recently donated about 50 computer
systems, approximately a $14,000 value, to Morton Elementary School part
of the Pueblo City Schools.
Classrooms that had one or two computers in them will now have at least
five up-to-date systems along with a computer lab consisting of 32
computers. More than 500 students will be reached by the advanced
technology, providing a better academic environment.
"We are very appreciative of the opportunity to have technology
accessible for our students," Principal Floyd Gallegos wrote in a thank
you letter to the squadron. "Thank you for all your diligent efforts in
making this process work for us and your patience with our district in
trouble shooting the many road blocks that occurred."
The lengthy process, which started in April 2012, was well worth it,
according to Staff Sgt. Jeffrey Achuff, 8 SWS satellite systems
operator. Achuff was a part of the team that helped wipe all the hard
drives clean and ensured the school received them.
The school had been struggling to get new equipment, according to
Achuff, and during the delivery there was a lot of energy and excitement
because the faculty was so happy.
"They were all thrilled. The systems we delivered are old by our
standards but for the kids and faculty they were much improved and new,"
stated Achuff. "I had just backed the van up to the doors and some kids
were coming in from lunch recess when one of the kids, with eager
anticipation in her voice, asked one of the teachers there, 'Are those
the new computers?'
'They sure are... I told you we'd get some new ones,' said the teacher.
The little girl said 'Awesome!' with a high-pitched, excited tone."
The first step was replacing 8 SWS's old computer systems with new ones.
The computers still considered functional had their hard drives wiped
clean, a requirement before the school could have them. Wiping the hard
drive is a several hour process per computer.
Lots and lots of paperwork was needed to complete the transfer.
According to Senior Master Sgt. Robert Pacheco, 8 SWS first sergeant,
the most crucial part of the transfer is to make sure the organization
has a non-profit contact and somebody is willing to sign for the
equipment to ensure the equipment is not sold and a profit is never
"You just can't give up because you're going to run into some road
blocks, but you just got to keep working with people," Pacheco said.
"These kids without technology are falling further behind."
Achuff stated that he believes more Air Force units should strive to donate their old equipment if possible.
"Put them to good use and enrich the learning environment for the next
generation of leaders, including possible future Airmen," Achuff stated.