Congratulations to the California Air National Guard’s 146th Airlift Wing, which recently beat
out 89 other Airlift Wings across the United States to receive the Maj. Gen. Stanley F.H. Newman Award. The award is given annually to the most outstanding Air National Guard wing and was awarded in recognition of the 146th Airlift Wing’s exceptionally meritorious service supporting wildfire suppression and COVID-19 pandemic relief efforts.

Service members from the 146th were initially stationed at Food Share in March 2020, for what was expected to be a three month effort to help respond to the massive increase in demand for food assistance at a time when Food Share had lost nearly all of its volunteers. As the pandemic continued however, and the increased need for food never waned, those three months turned into two years. 

Commenting on the mission, the 146th Airlift Wing’s Chief Master Sergeant, Ray Robles, a Ventura County resident whose full-time job is as a LA County firefighter said, “I would have never thought in my whole military career that I would be involved with something like this. To see the work that we did from start to finish, from getting a can to packing it in a box to going to a distribution and delivering it to someone who really needed help and who was so, so thankful. And in addition to that, doing it here in our own backyard, in our own community, that was special.”

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