Lennon retires after 38 years civilian, military service

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Ben Mota
  • 434th ARW

Many have called Grissom Air Reserve Base, Indiana work at some point in their careers, but for one individual for more than 38 years it has not only been his place of employment but much more. 


Thomas Lennon, 434th Civil Engineer Squadron, chief of construction management, started his career at Grissom in 1983 as an Air Force reservist working as an aerospace ground equipment technician with the 434th Aerospace Ground Equipment Flight where he maintained the A10 Thunderbolts. 


As an Airman, Lennon moved up the enlisted ranks while building a sizable resume including five deployments. Those deployments supported a variety of contingencies including: Operation Decisive Endeavor, Operation Southern Watch, Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.


In 2010  Lennon accepted a Department of Defense civilian position at Grissom as a civil engineering technician while simultaneously shifting his military career  path after being selected as a case worker in the 434th Force Support Squadron Airman and Family Readiness Center. 


Shortly after, in 2013 Lennon retired from the Air Force Reserve with the rank of master sergeant after 31 years of service, but remained a familiar face at Grissom in his civilian capacity.  


“Tom has been a valuable asset to the unit,” said Mark Waite, 434th CES chief engineer and Lennon’s supervisor during his retirement celebration. “He’s one of those guys you can give a project to and know it is going to be taken care of. He will definitely be missed.”


As chief of construction management, Lennon led the base construction management team of construction inspectors ensuring that not only job safety and OSHA standards were met but also contract compliance of numerous multimillion-dollar base construction projects. Lennon simultaneously provided engineering support to wing leadership and base personnel by managing the base construction program including programming, designing, executing and inspecting construction projects in support of the wing mission. 


During Lennon’s retirement ceremony a full room of friends and family watched as he thanked everyone for their friendship and support throughout his career. 


“For the past several decades this base has been my life,” said Lennon. “It’s been a great place to work, and I’m going to miss everyone.”


Lennon’s family has a long history of service at Grissom including his father, Thomas T Lennon, who served as Grissom’s billeting manager before he retired, and his son, Thomas Lennon Jr., who continues to serve as a Grissom civilian firefighter. 


Despite retirement Lennon plans on staying busy supporting his son’s business, spending time with family and enjoying hobbies he often set aside due to his military and civilian service.


“I hope to spend more time with the grandkids and family,” said Lennon. “I really enjoy fishing and camping and hope to do more of that, perhaps a bit further away than the local reservoir.”