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A CENTENNIAL CELEBRATION: Offutt Air Force Base marks special milestone

Posted at 9:16 PM, May 10, 2024
and last updated 2024-05-10 22:16:26-04
  • A special ceremony celebrating 100 years of the airfield that would eventually become Offutt Air Force Base was held Friday afternoon with Air Force service men and women, politicians and civilians on hand to celebrate.

BROADCAST TRANSCRIPT:

A century ago, the airfield at what was then the Fort Crook Army Base was named after Jarvis Offutt, the first air casualty of World War I from Omaha. Offut’s name would be given to the entire base in 1948.

Now, members of the Air Force, Civilians, Politicians and more were all on hand to celebrate Offutt Air Force Base and its growth in the last century.

“There's nothing better than bringing history to our newest airmen so they can understand why this is so important,” Lt. Col Ryan Davis, 55th Squadron Commander said.

Governor Jim Pillen spoke about why it was so important to celebrate the occasion.

“The message is we have to celebrate these extraordinary moments to make sure that every generation recognizes the privilege and the liberties that we have and we keep stories alive, so we never ever take it for granted.” Pillen said.

Davis was part of the effort to put on the ceremony, he said what’s happened on the grounds over the last century isn’t lost on him.

“Just the fact that this parade field that we’re on is so close to that runway is just so phenomenal and to think of what happened here over the past hundred years is just awesome.” Davis said.

Major additions to the base over the last century include the 55th Wing, and Strategic Air Command. The ceremony included a time capsule where air service members placed items inside, to remember the celebration in the years to come.

Davis said it was all a testament to the resilience of the air force base,

“When we had a closed runway we figured it out, when we had a flood we figured it out,” Davis said. “We do that each and every day for the past and the future fights.”

There was a deep sense of pride for many accomplishments and advancements that have been seen on base over the last century. The hope is that it will continue for the next hundred years.