434th MXG wins consecutive effectiveness awards

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Courtney Dotson-Essett
  • 434th Public Affairs


Excellence in all we do is a core value that Airmen stand behind and the 434th Maintenance Group is a staple of just that, earning the Maintenance Effectiveness Award for two consecutive years.

This distinction is awarded at the command level and by Numbered Air Force, which gave the group the honor in both 2017 and 2018. The competition is stiff and it has significant meaning for the wing’s maintenance group.

“It means that maintenance is able to effectively use our resources in the most expeditious manner, possible,” said 1st Lt. Christopher Shamiyeh 434th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron Operations Officer. “I’m just happy that the group is represented. We do outstanding work here at Grissom.”

Contributions to earning the accolade include: assisting the Dutch Royal Air Force with boom removal and storage; over $137 thousand in savings on parts and resources; and an excellent showing during the Worthy Phoenix exercise.

“In a three day exercise we generated eight aircraft in 11 hours which is really outstanding,” Shamiyeh said.

Working efficiently and effectively is part of business as usual for MXG, he noted.

“We are big on stripes on the line,” he said. “When our guys are out there doing tasks, our supervisors are out there, making sure they’re doing it safely and by the book.”

Despite the more than 1,200 sorties and an aggressive aircraft maintenance schedule, the group also found time to train a group from the 914th Airlift Wing at Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station, New York with the transition from the C-130 Hercules to KC-135 Stratotanker.

“We trained them from A-Z on how to perform the inspection, what we look at, how to interpret the technical order and any kind of stuff and equipment they’re not used to using or different processes that we provided them,” Shamiyeh said.

Reaching beyond the gate and being active within the community helped secure the accolade for the group as well.

In 2018, there were 14 tours for schools and community groups to help cultivate community relations.

Part of being effective as a group means taking care of the member. A portion of the award also focused on MXG’s personnel quality of life programs.

“We are big in the maintenance group on recognizing our high performers and helping people along with their careers and getting them pushed in the right direction,” Shamiyeh said.

The proof is in the promoting with a number of Airmen and six STEP II candidates earning stripes.

MXG leaders also worked with top leadership to create incentive flights for quarterly award winners.

“The important thing for us is getting everyone in the wing to come together and see the end product of what they do every day,” he added.

Shamiyeh said the flights are an opportunity for those outside of maintenance and operations to get on the aircraft and see how their roles tie into Grissom’s big picture.

He said that’s the best part about the award too.

“This isn’t just one person or one squadron’s award,” Shamiyeh said. “This is everybody’s award in the maintenance group.

“Every shop, every person had something to put into this and that’s what makes it so great to be recognized in this way by the command,” he added.

The 434th ARW is the largest KC-135R Stratotanker unit in the Air Force Reserve Command. Men and women from the Hoosier Wing routinely deploy around the world in support of the Air Force mission.

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