by Senior Airman Nicole Leidholm
60th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs
7/21/2015 - TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- More
than 40 of Travis' civic leaders and honorary commanders visited and
toured Vandenberg Air Force Base's facilities July 14 to learn about the
mission during a fly-away civic leader tour.
The group was welcomed by 30th Space Wing leadership before heading to
the Western Range Operations Control Center for a briefing on the unique
mission as well as what they would see on the tour.
The first stops in the morning included briefings at Space Launch Complex-6 and the SpaceX facility.
SLC-6 is a United Launch Alliance facility for the Delta IV rocket, an
Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle. SpaceX is an aerospace manufacturer
and space transport service company developing reusable rocket launching
systems and supports the Falcon family of commercial space launch
"I was awed by what I saw; the complexity and geographical spans of the
base," said Tom Gamble, 60th Air Mobility Wing honorary commander and
Gamble Family Vineyards owner and manager. "The whole thing was neat to
see how everything was put into perspective, from past to present. I was
honored to be asked to be an honorary commander and won't be able to
stop talking about the trip. This visit was definitely worth it."
After lunch with local Vandenberg civic leaders, the group headed back to the WROCC for an in-depth tour of the facility.
The 30th SW's Western Range is the Department of Defense's West Coast
Launch and Test Range system supporting polar launch, intercontinental
ballistic missile testing, missile defense operation, aeronautical
support, weapons system development, orbital recovery and military
exercise. It extends 6,000 miles along the Pacific Ocean. Following the
WROCC, the civic leaders visited the Space and Missile Heritage Center.
"This was a fantastic tour and it opened my eyes to the possibilities
for young people in (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)
careers," said Kristin Corey, 60th Force Support Squadron honorary
commander and Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District superintendent.
"There are so many opportunities not only in the Air Force but potential
professions as well that I want to be able to promote to students."
The purpose of fly-away civic leader tours is to give community leaders
an opportunity to better understand the home unit and other Air Force
"Every once in a while I do something cool in this job," Corey said. "Yesterday was one of those days."