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Korea

It was October 1975, the 554th CESHR Headquarters Squadron was still located at U-Tapao RTAFB, Thailand. Colonel Joe G. Winslow, Commander, and SMSgt Fred Shropshire was First Sergeant. Colonel Winslow had the distinction of being the commander of a RED HORSE Squadron in a transition, while being responsible for the recovery of buildings previously erected, AM-2 airfield matting and revetment material assets, all were completed projects in Thailand but a few years before, and by the same squadron. Like the modular dormitories erected at NKP, in 1972 by DET # 5, initialy retro-grade assets from Vietnam, now being dismantled for shipment to Korea by RED HORSE work crews. At the same time, Headquarters personnel were engaged in a major work effort, at U-Tapao, for completing all essential projects already under construction. Essentially, RED HORSE was working at full capacity from a continuing recovery phase dismantling projects, and conducting new construction simultaneously.

Some of us had mixed emotions somewhere between our past project achievements, and what would become of our future. Some of us would also have the distinction of handling those same assets from three countries, i.e. Vietnam, Thailand, and soon in Korea. This may have been to our advandage since extra care was taken, and necessary for protecting the assets knowing full well that we would once again take responsibility for using them on other projects, and with us selected as Project Managers. All of the retro-grade recovery teams accomplished outstanding results, under trying conditions, and diminishing base level support at individual sites. The U. S. taxpayers would also realize a major benefit from extended usage of the construction assets and a cost avoidance courtesy of the 554th RED HORSE. A benefit only realized from taking the construction mission elsewhere, and by the seamlessly operations expected and received from RED HORSE.

As the September-October 1975 class change began, Headquarters was undergoing a major downgrade, with the shift in manning sending 50 more personnel each to Clark AFB, Philippines, Osan AB and Kunsan AB, Korea. Those Detachments were created from the overall personnel strength of 400 persons assigned to the 554th CESHR Squadron. We were all on the move throughout PACAF, each detachment now making their own history. RED HORSE people, as in past years, were having projects under construction in two countries as they had done in Vietnam and Thailand. Before I leave the Thailand experience behind; I'd like to relate a moment in time from the men for their Structural Project NCO, while working at the NKP base with DET. #5, in 1972. One night after returning from a night on the town, in Nakhon Phanom, I entered the barrack ready for some much needed sleep. The lights were out and not wanting to awaken the rest of the occupants; I was being as quite as possible making myself ready for bed. I soon discovered there was no longer a bed. I felt around but found no bed or my stuff there. I couldn't see without the lights on so I remarked "all right where is my bed," being in an open bay; I supposed it had been pushed out of place, but no one seemed to be awake, or would they answer me. I was getting into a more demanding mode for someone to tell me where was my bed. Finally, I turned on the lights and there was no bed in the spot it should have been. Everyone in the building seemed concerned but they wouldn't admit to anything, or they were not cooperative. By then, I had just about ran out of patience when they all began laughing. Something still was not right; I looked around the area where my bed should have been, and also around the walls. I failed to notice the ropes hanging down from the roof trusses. Puzzled by their continued laughing, I noticed that some of my friends were looking up at the roof. Then it hits me, ropes, four of them; what were they doing hanging there in my area?. Finally, I toobegan looking up and I saw my bed, hanging there suspended in mid-air, between the open roof trusses, and seeing my stuff still placed on the bed only after it was lowered to the floor by four people. I thought this was surely an original joke, alot of fun for them but, I was in no mood for pranks that late at night. After the lowering of the bed back into place; I went to bed smiling, of course only after the lights went out, and all of us had settled down. Realizing that it was the crews way of getting even with me for being a hard taskmaster, and also for being their supervisor while we all were working the long hours and days together.

In December 1975, Headquarters, USAF issued the movement order for HQ 554th CESHR to leave U-Tapao RTAFB, Thailand, however, some of the retro-grade teams would still be hard at work TDY for a few more months working in Thailand, but for now, Osan Air Base, Korea became the new home for the 554th RED HORSE Squadron Headquarters. The RED HORSE compound construction, began in early 1976, and was well underway with the Squadron preparing for the $10 million dollar construction program ahead. We moved out of the older RED HORSE barrack, on the flightline April 5th, 1976, into a newly constructed permanent CMU masonry building, appropriately named Liberty Hall. It was across the street from the RED HORSE Compound. It was the newest and also the best dormitory on Osan Air Base. The building had two occupants per room for all our enlisted personnel. This was a great personal achievement and a credit to our Commander, Colonel Winslow, by showing outstanding support for his people. Colonel Winslow was also the initial inspiration for the many other improvements to be added within the compound. His initial building plan got us out of the many temporary shed type buildings and into the design and construction phase to replace the original 1950's era facilities located within the compound. It was under his direct command that many projects of a major construction effort, and design began such as the Osan Base Education Center, Fire Training Area and Smoke House, Special Services Supply, and the beginning of mobility and training exercises by the Squadron. The new Mustang Recreation Center, a major project of 17,500 square feet, funded at $295,000, made use of three pre-engineered metal buildings connected by a 2,500 square foot CMU masonry block central entrance. Construction on the building was a huge undertaking, and when completed a great asset to all Osan personnel. SSgt Richard Lindh was the project NCO and the one having a greater responsibility only achieved through dedication and attention to detail; producing quality results, and creating the best facility at the time ever at Osan. SSgt Lindh was a true professional whom went the extra mile to produce perfection. I would also observe an equal results on many other projects; like the Osan Education Center, named Presidents Hall, also a quality completed project in great demand by all Osan personnel. The largest single RED HORSE project, during 1976 and 1977, however was the construction of seven modular dormitories, funded at $2,418,000. This project alone was worked on by almost everyone in the workforce from design engineers, material control, supply, and the Operations Branch. These pre-manufactured units were the very same units previously used in countries mentioned before and now at Osan Air Base. From the construction during the erection phase, it was the only project that I can remember, where RED HORSE personnel had to place themselves in danger, all the while standing under two tons of steel and plywood a load swinging overhead, while manually stacking the base section with four metal columns; also the same for the second floor and roof sections. We had some of the best crane operators, however, great worry remained for those standing under the loads daily. Thanks to CMSgt Dale Leinen, CMSgt George Tisza, CMSgt Antonio Frank, SSgt Terry Smith, SGT. Richard Schmidhamer, TSgt John Eagle, SSgt Richard Davis, and SGT Richard Hunt for these RED HORSE men were but a few of the many men supporting the dormitory project. In the year of 1976, a special footnote; for the first time ever, sadness struct the 554th RED HORSE Squadron. CMSgt Nick Tolstick Jr. arrived in the squadron, in September 1976, and he passed away from natural causes, November 22, 1976. He was 48 years old. I remember his friendship and easy going manner. Yet in this short time he touched the lives of so many people whom met him.

Along with the September-October 1976 class change, there was also a Change of Command. Colonel Donald R. Reaves, Commander, and CMSgt Robert M. MacDonald, First Sergeant. Within this year grouping were many professional officers and senior NCOs. Again some of us had extended our tour of duty in Korea, and were continuing on with our same project assignments. It was by such continuity that RED HORSE was capable of supporting the other TDY projects outside of Korea, and this event even caught the attention of the Navy SEABEES. They sent an observer to Osan for training. Our Deputy Commander, Lt. Col. Roy A.J. Frusti was a great asset within the Command Section. Both Colonels Reaves and Frusti were men of great character and organization. Their idea of commanding was to recognize all exceptional performance and the building up of the Squadron's morale. Captain Harvey Dean Bartel was Operations Center Director, CMSgt George J. Tisza, Structural Supertindent, along with many other professional officers, NCOs and Airmen, assigned beginning the year October 1976, and ending September 1977. This was a most productive and enjoyable period at Osan. A pleasure to have served with so many outstanding men that one year. More would be accomplished then than any other year. The support of others came from the top down , as equally well received from the bottom up. Projects like the airfields ARMCO revetments, quick turn, and the modular dormitories were in the process of being completed also a major exercise was underway called TEAM SPIRIT. RED HORSE personnel would build a tent city for deploying units to Osan Air Base. This was also a time for RED HORSE people to once again come together, a time for Squadron parties, sports, and for demonstrating mutural respect for each other. Everyone was family both military, or Korean. Leadership was demonstrated by all those assigned. Especially from all the many assigned officers throughout the sections. Working as Operations Director, Captain H. Dean Bartel always had an open door policy, he was easy to approach, taking the time to make people feel like they were also important. He was well versed in Structural Engineering and offered great ideas and personal assistance to his Senior NCOs. Even the younger Airmen and Sergeants felt empowered. I recall an event when SGT Richard Hunt, assistant project NCO, assigned to a modular dormitory site during our lunch period, for security reasons, and being there alone when Colonel Reaves, RED HORSE Commander, was escorting a visting General Grade Officer to the project site wanting to go inside the building for a progress tour and update. Sgt Hunt having been told, by me, not to allow anyone within the site, due to safety concerns, and a requirement for wearing a hard hat. Sgt Hunt quickly approached both the Colonel and General , after saluting , he introduced himself and promptly stated his instructions as given to him; that no one was allowed on the jobsite, for safety and security reasons during the lunch hour. Colonel Reaves said " The general was so impressed with Sgt Hunt's military bearing that he thanked him for the support of his orders, and for showing personal good judgement". Sgt Hunt also instructed both senior officers to please return when the full crew were back from lunch, and of course, he would be taking his lunch. They did not return to the jobsite but were given a full briefing on the jobsite progress never-the-less. This was just one of the examples of the conduct expected from many other junior NCOs who were performing at the level of leadership which RED HORSE always demanded of them. Leadership like that was always dependable, quick thinking, and always of being mentally alert in all situations, a take charge approach to any problem solving. Without a second thought this motivation would allow the senior leadership time to appoint such men, as these, to serve as Project Managers, those whom were responsible for the daily decision making on thousands of dollars worth of construction assets, both in materal cost, and the manpower necessary for accomplishing the project to a successful completion. They would excell in all those and their many other responsibilities. I had never witnessed the removal of a Project Manager in my eight years with RED HORSE and at least one Senior Airman was placed in-charge of a $100,000 project at Kunsan Air Base, Korea. Senior Airman Fred Harrison excelled in his many responsibilities and was awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal for that achievement. I was the benefactor also for many such achievements of these young leaders. Being the Project Manager of the modular dorminatory MCP construction project, supervising these same men's daily achievements would make it possible for me, and with the aid of LT. Colonel Frusti who prepared a submission package nominating me to PACAF, as the PACAF Civil Engineering Senior NCO, for the year 1976. My selection and the offering of a thanks to all was a humblling experience knowing that others were equally qualified, and whom had also contributed greatly to my being selected. The mere thanks that would somehow allow for this to become, for me, even now a time to express once more a greatful appreciation to both the Command Officers and Enlisted forces assigned to RED HORSE. On June 1977, General Louis L. Wilson Jr., Commander In Chief, PACAF made the presentation at the Osan Air Base Theater. Just how the Squadron was able to keep this from me I'll never know. I did wonder, however, why I was the only one to be asked to wear my dress blues to Commander's Call that day.

0n August 19, 1976, the reality of being in Korea and that of our mission there was forced upon all of us. Two American Army Officers were brutally slain in the Joint Security Area (JSA) at Panmunjom. A work crew was trimming a tree hampering the United Nations Command (UNC) observation post area at the UNC side of the bridge of no return. That tree was the scene for the brutal axe slaying of CPT. Bonifas and Lt. Barrett. This was soon to be also a time for the September- October 1976-1977 year class to rotate out. Some of us would again submitt the paperwork requesting an approval to extend our tour of duty and our requests were approved. We regreted seeing our friends depart each year, but other friends would soon be made. Projects for the most part remained the same and friendships were everlasting. The 554th CESHR had been awarded nine (9) Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards, however, the seventh (7) also with the "V" device, as a result of service during the war in Vietnam. The ninth AFOUA Award covered the period April 1, 1976 through June 30, 1977. Colonel Arthur J. Hartmann, Commander, replaced Colonel Reaves and Lt. Colonel Peter C. Christoplis became Deputy Commander, 554th CESHR, and MSgt James R. Wallace, First Sergeant of the 1977-1978 class. It was known from the start that this one year all squadron personnel would be working under a different style of command leadership. For some it was survival, for others an opportunity, but we were all professionals, and as such, we had to work together for continuing on with our mission. Arriving with the new class we also gained a rare 14 year time- in- service Senior NCO, CMSgt Joe F. Vanhooser, Superintendent of Operations. Our new officers were some of the very best like Major David R. Lee (Lt. Colonel Selectee), and Major Thomas E. Peot. Colonel Lee, Chief, Operations and Major Peot, Chief, Engineering. Both officers were exceptional men whom I relied upon, for both their support and friendship, and together they helped us greatly throughut the year. CMSgt Carl Johnson was Structural Superintendent. Having completed the MCP modular dormintory project, I was selected by Colonel Hartmann, to go TDY to Clark Air Force Base, Phillipines, as Superintendent of the remaining detachment personnel, and the civilians employed there. I also would become Project Manager for constructing a COPE Thunder building project. The Detachment 2, 554th CESHR had been deactiviated with the assigned RED HORSE men transfered to the 3rd Civil Engineering Squadron. They were however on loan back to me, and I also retained the civilians assigned to the detachment until all our current projects were completed. This assignment was without a doubt the most difficult one in my 30 year career, and our working relationships were strained from the very beginning upon my arrival at Clark Air Force Base. The once RED HORSE military NCOs and Airmen resented someone new coming in taking over their projects already in progress, and having a new supervisor now to deal with. Mostly, I had not worked with any of them before, but I set my goals and stated that I would also expect a much greater workforce production effort. It was only possible from the support I received from Colonel Hartmann, RED HORSE Commander, that helped me to control this situation, and also their rejection, and my being able to finally accomplish my duties there. The remaining construction mission was all completed professionally before returning to Osan Air Base, Korea in February 1978.

Upon my arrival back at Headquarters in February, Colonel Hartmann made the decision that I was now needed at Kunsan Air Base, Detachment 1, 554th CESHR, as Chief, Operations. I had come a full circle, and I was now back serving with the unit which I began duty with in early 1973. Lt. Colonel David O. Swint, Detachment Commander, and I began a new chapter and page working a new job assignment at Kunsan Air Base. Thankfully, Colonel Swint was mission orientated, and so was I. He expected always our very best efforts, and I was truly greatful to have an opportunity for providing the senior leadership of the Operations Branch, and also working for Colonel Swint. He was the most dedicated officer I had ever worked for. His work schedule was unlike any other I'd known, arriving early, and I mean 5:30-6:00 am and leaving work late into the evening hours. Colonel Swint's days were long ,but he also had everything planned out, his schedule made even before the rest of us arrived for work We also had a good team of officers and the senior NCOs were all experienced. No problems existed within the Operations Branch or the other sections. In fact, the detachment had some of the best people, and they were highly knowledgable in their positions, ie., like TSgt Marvin E.Rogers, NCOIC, Vehicle Maintenance. He kept the fleet running, and in construction work, equipment is the key, for maintaining the schedules, along with Supply, Engineering, and the Project Managers. An Operations effort was heavy into erecting airfield revetments, but this time we were using the B-1 type revetments, and TSgt Robert (Andy) Anderson was busy at making revetments his life's work in many months at Kyongju Air Base, as both NCOIC and Team Chief. As I had stated before, RED HORSE revetment crews performed some of the most difficult tasking imaginable. Day in and day out their work tasking remained the same, and it was hard to remain motivated or to become inspired, while accomplishing an assembly tasking. This is when a personable NCO and leader must take charge, demonstrating to his team an abiding concern for each member, explaining the importance of their role in meeting the challenges of any expected performance. TSgt Anderson being that natural leader would soon achieve the very best possible results in comparison with any other crew erecting revetments. His sustaining leadership, and by being the ranking NCO at Kyongju Air Base, provided the detachment with a seamless command and control effort, at this operating location (OLA) reflecting in a high achievement for the detachment, himself, and his crew.

During the period of July 1978, Colonel Thomas E. Colvin, Commander, replaced Colonel Hartmann, at Osan Air Base and Detachment 1, 554th CESHR Major Donald Hall, Commander, replaced Lt. Colonel Swint at Kunsan Air Base, Korea. The year began with most projects just beginning that would keep the workforce fully employed. Once again RED HORSE people would prove themselves to be outstanding leaders and this level of leadership extended downward well into the ranks. In NCOs like Sgt Thomas A. Turner, Sgt. Richard L. Thompson, Sgt Charles S. Rider, SSgt Thomas L. Crinky, SSgt Johnnie K. Evans, SSgt Gary W. Powell, SSgt Bruce M. Ball, TSgt James M. Whitney, MSgt Buck Shipman and Airman David A. Ambelang. All of those working in the Operations Branch; still two of the best site development NCOs, SSgt David E. Beistell and SSgt Arthur D. Campbell worked in the Engineering Branch. So many NCOs could be called upon when needed to work in a leadership position, and most did serve as Project Managers. Our Engineering Officers 1Lt. Richard A. Brown, 1Lt. Fred T. Davis, and 1Lt. Fredrick W. Holderman provided the outstanding design and engineering support. Lt. Brown's original graphics painting and designs on the walls of the Security Police Operations building and the Finance building were visual improvements worthy of highlighting. The Logistics Branch Chief, SMsgt David L. Pridgen provided outstanding management of the Vehicle Maintenance and Supply sections. RED HORSE people were still working with retro-grade pre-engineered metal buildings such as a 100ft. X 100ft. spand for the Finance and also Aircraft Ground Equipment Storage buildings. A major project to construct a bomb pre-load facility at Kunsan, Air Base was in-progress and essentially, the selected site was a wetlands, a marsh area for storm water runoff, and because of this it would require hundreds of cubic yards of select sand fill for percolating the water shed, and providing for a floating pan on which, when the sand was confined and compacted, would support foundations, and concrete slabs, for the pre-load and assembly area, and asphalt roads and parking areas. Open drainage was also necessary to permit excess surface water to flow out into the surrounding low lands. Equipment like graders and vibration compactors were used to consolidate the new fill, to maintain density in all the construction areas, for maintaining the wheel base loading specifications which were critical for the 9,700 square feet of open sided metal buildings that were constructed, and 3 each 2,340 square feet holding pads on which the loaded trailers were parked after being loaded. Open sided buildings were use to reduce the blast effect in case of an accident, and would still maintain an all weather capability. MSgt "Mandy" Manderville and the Airfields Section performed all their earth moving and site preparations work in an outstanding manner, both the equipment operators, and the pavements section taskings on this was also a major undertaking by the detachment. Revetments were placed within each protected holding area and around the pre-load building and assembly areas for added blast protection. This was a project of major importance to the 8th Tactical Fighter Wing, located at Kunsan Air Base, and also Home of the Wolfpack.

A new Operations Location (0L) AA was established at Taegu Air Base, with First Lieutenant James T. Ryburn, Commander. During October, the OL began construction on a $1,167,000 dormitory project which provided living spaces for 196 Airman. Lieutenant James Ryburn was a natural leader, even early in his career, he could recognized the leadership qualities in others. He possessed a natural and keen awareness in matters of importance and was astute enough to rely on his men; while he also providing them with the motivation and support necessary to succeed. He was a bright and knowing officer with an eye towards fulfilling all and any single personal achievement, tempered with fair and balanced leadership. Once when I went to Taegu Air Base for an on site inspection, the men had been partisipating in a party downtown the previous night, and had become rough-and-tumble on the returning bus ride back. Well, I joined in on the required command visit with the Taegu Base Commander along with MSgt Harley "Buck" Shipman, NCOIC, and Lt. Ryburn. The Base Commander took his liberity in-turn with each of us, counselling the senior leadership of RED HORSE, on the expectations which he required of our men while assigned to his base. Well, somewhere during the chewing out we were receiving, and the topic on military bearing, or the lack thereof ; 1LT. James T. Ryburn made a remark out of the blue,"Colonel as for military bearing-Sir are you aware that your Eagle insignias on your collar are displayed backwards?." That one comment would end all other previous discussion. One for our side, We saluted smartly and were dismissed with our promise to talk with the men about their conduct. 1LT. Ryburn remained confident in his leadership role and in the performance of his command duties ; thereby, not needing to make any example of his people. He instead reached a personal agreement with his men, and with a broader understanding of the situation, acting only from a position of trust and mutural respect did he affect the cange that he desired from the others under his direct command. All of RED HORSE was kinda like that, and the officers would knowingly use the better of discretion in such matters unless given no other choice in some harsher situations of an offense.

For the period of July 1, 1978 to June 30, 1979, Lt General James D. Hughes, Pacific Air Forces Commander-In- Chief, notified the 554th CESHR (RED HORSE) that it would receive it's eleventh Air Force Outstanding Unit Award. The horse threw it's 'hardhat in the ring' for the Robert H. Curtin Award, and was selected as the Civil Engineering Squadron of the Year. It included; completion of 84 projects at six locations; management of a $7,281,700 in-house construction program; batching, hauling, and placing 15,000 cubic yards of concrete; and erection of 9 and one half miles of revetments. More and more of us were asking for and getting our extensions approved on our tour of duty in Korea. It is people whom make the history and doing your very best is in the best interest of any organization. Colonel Thomas E. Colvin rotated out July 2, 1979 and so did Major Donald C. Hall, Detachment Commander, 554 CESHR. Both of these Commanders led their men; while they performed tasks, and duties highly evaluated by the Air Force as an award winning year.

Colonel William R. Sims, Commander, replaced Colonel Colvin at Osan Air Base, and Major Craig A. Birch, Commander, at Kunsan Air Base with Detachment 1, 554th CESHR. SMSgt Carl Johnson was promoted to CMSgt at Osan Headquarters in 1979 and became Deputy of Operations. I remained the Chief of Operations at Kunsan Air Base for another year an up until my tour of duty ended in Korea. The Detachment also kept TSgt Anderson at Kwanju Air Base. Lt. W. A Fromwalt, Commander, replaced Lt. Ryburn at Taegu Air Base, and SMSgt Ernesto Cantu replaced MSgt Shipman as NCOIC, at (OL) AA location. The Detachment began a full year of projects at those locations such as a project to improve drainage ditches on Kunsan Air Base, using 36 inch concrete pipe sections installed and covered on the existing open ditches. RED HORSE began to upgrade the 8th CBSG, Base Civil Engineering Squadron compound like was done at Osan Air Base in 1973. We provided a new Base Civil Engineers storage building by erecting a 40 ft.X 103 ft.X 20 ft. metal building, and also constructed a BCE maintenance and repair shops. In addition, we constructed a Social Actions facility. While working on those projects, RED HORSE was tasked with an emergency repair project on Airman Dormitory # 1443. A fire was started by an enlisted Airman and the building was heavily damaged by the smoke and fire. Repairs consisted of the removal of modular sections, remove and replace all flooring of the effected areas, ceilings, walls; and repairing the exterior walls as necessary. The Airman setting the fire was also identified. The annual Team Spirit exercise continued each year with RED HORSE completing the "tent city" and we also were placing revetments around critical facilities for hardning potection. Major Birch proved himself early on, for being an outstanding Commander, and he continued ahead with that support and wisdom shown to us which the Detachment had learned to expect. Major Birch often seeked out advice from those of us whom were carry-overs, andwere the managers and section chiefs. Without position changes of his top enlisted NCOs this had to be an advandage to him - without the learning curve. He would remain current on all our progress that was being made, and was the consummate cheerleader for all of us serving under his command. The Detachment was given many important projects, however, the construction of a remote LORAN Site, during his tenure, was but one more opportunity for proving ourselves as being the best at what we did. Headquarters, 554th CESHR, was presented with the tasks of constructing two seperate site locations for the LORAN system. One at Naju, the other at Pohang. These sites were rural villages and the countryside sites were selected for their remoteness. Since Naju was the closest for the detachment at Kunsan Air Base that site was assigned to us. The Headquarters Squadron at Osan Air Base was assigned to the Pohang Site. Both sites had the support of the U.S. Army, 802nd Engineering Battalion for the cut and fill phase of each site preparation. The Naju site was located on top of a medium size hill, and required the most cut to level out the site for building the antena support equipment, and for erecting a tall antena and guy wire grid and layout of anchor supports. The Army by having the type 290, earth moving heavy equipment, were best suited for cutting the earth for reducing the crested elevations of the site before construction could begin. This two and one half months of effort took up much of the project construction phase, the second major tasking, was building an eight foot tall concrete masonry block (CMU) wall completely around the site for a perimeter. With irregular elevations outside the cleared boundry, construction of the wall was difficult even though the site proper had a slight drop in elevation to accomodate an open ditch and for stormwater runoff drainage. A large masonry crew of 22 nationals and a military workforce was required for meeting a reasonable completion schedule required for erecting this three-quarter mile wall tasking. No one knew just how long this undertaking would be so a schedule had to be made, for guaging progress, and establishing a completion date. Since most of the major taskings; were the cut and fill of the site, and the CMU wall phases, time was dependent upon the weather, equipment serviceability/ availability, materials, and the numbers of personnel assigned, to the most arduous of tasks requiring the most intensive labor to perform; i.e., earth moving and the wall all affected the project outcome. Major Birch and the leadership developed a critical flow chart so that we could maintain as many simultaneous taskings as were possible, and to identify critical manpower assignments, for the proper skills required to expedite production at the site. Since everything had to be transported to the site from Kunsan Air Base, Major Birch dedicated much of his time and efforts, ensuring all the required scheduling was carefully coordinated daily between Operations and the Section Chiefs. His selection of TSgt John F. Bailey was key for the professional site supervision, and as Project Manager, he worked tirelessly towards meeting the proposed completion date. Sergeant Bailey was also a no nonsense, and hands on non-commissioned officer (NCO) whom worked hard and planned accordingly. When John wasn't managering, he pitched-in and helped on a task to motivate his workforce. Still visitors arriving at the site often found him wet from freshly splashed poured concrete or muddy from the wet clay fill. Even though the antena was being erected by GEIA, TSgt Bailey and crew had to excavate, form and pour a concrete anchor base, and a 360 degree radius of multiple,dead man guy wire anchor pilings, some on the outer ring as big as eight foot by eight foot solid reinforced steel concrete blocks with some sloped at an angle of pull with each antena section when erected. The Detachment was able to meet our proposed scheduled completion date in-accordance with our flow chart and theNaju site was the first site to be completed. In part, this was due to our people for meeting the challenge, by effective planning for success, and the constant encourgement received from Major Birch, and also not to be forgotten, the outstanding leadership capabilities from TSgt John Bailey, Project Manager, and his crew.

All RED HORSE projects are completed as a team effort, and it was no different when the Detachment was tasked by Headquarters, PACAF to plan for the 8th Tactical Fighter Wings conversion to the F-16 fighter aircraft at Kunsan Air Base in early 1980. The Engineering Branch and Operations worked together aggressively on the development of a critical path work flow chart, providing for various base structures in support of maintenance facilities, required for the new tactical aircraft. The 8th CBSG, Base Civil Engineering also worked closely on the required detailed planning for the supporting maintenance facilities. Some buildings had to be of new construction; others were modified to accommodate system changes and capabilities. RED HORSE fed into the equation a time schedule for each project, by estimating the total manhours necessary to achieve a completion time for each tasking. When added together the estimated total times would allow for us meeting the established Department of Defense need date, and the Department of the Air Force implementation date. All Branch Chiefs and shop supervisors were instrumental in the development of the Detachment's work plan. But the developed plan also had to be achievable, so a fine tuning was necessary from each craftperson tasked, by each completing a review of their skill requirements. We had the very best supervisors and technicians so their imput confirmed within a certainty our work plans, and our projections were still well within the required conversion start date, and also with the arrival of the first F-16 aircraft at the base. Before then, however, both RED HORSE and Base Civil Engineering representatives had too attend the Secretary of the Air Force (SATAF) conference held in Hawaii, to justify and offer up our local construction plan, for review by the members attending the conference, or defend it which ever was the case to be made. I was selected as a member of the Kunsan Air Base team to attend the SATAF Conference, and I was able to convince the DOD Representative/Project Officer, not without having some doubt and reservations of his own, that RED HORSE had developed a well thought out plan, and could produce the expected results which we stated in our plan of action. The Project Officer was not that easy to convince, however, other senior staff were listening to me explaining the efforts taken in compiling the plan. We were a team of two Lieutenants and a CMSgt, telling the Department of Defense we could meet a schedule, not unlike those other bases he had encountered, that took much longer for making their base ready, at other F-16 aircraft conversion sites. RED HORSE would be the exception we told them. Our people dedicated to the mission, and this project being important, a top priority commitment and a goal for us to achieve. This was the one priority project to accomplish, planed by us, but having a different assigned Commander and Operations, Chief, other than the ones whom developed the detail planning phase work up, and on record for having justified it totally to the command senior officials. Major Birch, Commander, Detachment 1, 554th CESHR, rotated back to the states and Major Gerald Lee, Commander, reported in, and I elected to return to the states in October 1980, receiving an assignment to Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi. My consecutive tours of duty with RED HORSE ended for the time being after the eight years of service. How did the F-16 conversion project for Kunsan Air Base, Korea meet the plan?. Well, Major Lee (Lt.Col. selectee), after his year tour with RED HORSE in Korea ended; he was assigned to Keesler Air Force Base, and upon his arrival informed me that the Detachment 1, 554th CESHR had met, exceeded, or been within plus or minus 10 percent of each tasking our plan had numerated. Best of all the maintenance support facilities were all completed, standing ready for use, upon the arrival of the first F-16 aircraft. Our moto is and remains after all, "Can Do-Will Do". One RED HORSE Squadron, the 554th CESHR, locatedstill in Korea over there and making history. The Squadron remains in the Republic of South Korea and continues jobbing no doubts.