AAFB, community continue 45 years of partnership during Farm City Week

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Miyah Gray
  • 97th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs

Every year during Farm City Week, Airmen from Altus Air Force Base, Oklahoma, and members of the City of Altus’ agricultural community take time to learn more about each other’s mission and role in the community.

This year on Nov. 14, 2022, members of the community were able to visit AAFB where they toured the 97th Security Forces virtual shooting range, KC-46 Pegasus simulators and a C-17 Globemaster III. Later that week, Airmen then received the opportunity to tour locations that are essential to agriculture in the community.

“In Altus, our base and local community are very reliant on each other, which makes these touchpoints so important,” said Technical Sgt. Andrew Valence, 54th Air Refueling Squadron noncommissioned officer in charge of KC-135 curriculum. “This tour was unique in the fact that we were able to host a subset of the community that doesn’t always get to break away from their work. Knowing this, we were excited to take advantage of the opportunity and introduce them to our mission in a tactile way while building relationships that may not have otherwise happened organically.”

Airmen received the opportunity to learn about the Altus-Lugert Dam and see exactly how cotton is processed at the Humphrey’s Co-Op Cotton Gin and Abernathy Farms.

This event provided Airmen and community members the chance to strengthen community relationships by providing insight about the base missions that take place in a region of agricultural significance.

“The military and agricultural industry are the driving forces of the local community,” said Tom Buchanan, the Altus-Lugert Irrigation District manager. “We’re dependent on the impact of both to keep the economy growing and functioning as it should.”

Events like these are essential in keeping the heritage of Mobility’s Hometown alive.