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Laughlin, Del Rio unite for DCC

Members of Laughlin Air Force Base, the city of Del Rio, Val Verde County, and the state of Texas join together to cut the ribbon for the Defense Control Center at Laughlin AFB, Texas June 26, 2017.  The Defense Control Center, located outside the West Gate, will allow the base’s security forces the ability to inspect vehicles with state-of-the-art technology, while ensuring the safety of the base’s community.

Members of Laughlin Air Force Base, the city of Del Rio, Val Verde County, and the state of Texas join together to cut the ribbon for the Defense Control Center at Laughlin AFB, Texas June 26, 2017. The Defense Control Center, located outside the West Gate, will allow the base’s security forces the ability to inspect vehicles with state-of-the-art technology, while ensuring the safety of the base’s community.

Col. Thomas Shank, 47th Flying Training Wing commander, gives the closing remarks at the ceremony dedicated to the development of the Defense Control Center at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas, on June 26, 2017.  The new DCC building ensures the security of Laughlin and its Airmen by providing an enclosed, state-of-the-art inspection station for inbound traffic to Laughlin.

Col. Thomas Shank, 47th Flying Training Wing commander, gives the closing remarks at the ceremony dedicated to the development of the Defense Control Center at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas, on June 26, 2017. The new DCC building ensures the security of Laughlin and its Airmen by providing an enclosed, state-of-the-art inspection station for inbound traffic to Laughlin.

Mrs. Shannalea Taylor, Texas Military Preparedness Commission commissioner, gives a speech before the crowd gathered in front of the new Defense Control Center at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas, June 26, 2017.  During her speech, Mrs. Taylor praised Col. Shank for his innovation and impact on making Laughlin a better base than when he found it.

Mrs. Shannalea Taylor, Texas Military Preparedness Commission commissioner, gives a speech before the crowd gathered in front of the new Defense Control Center at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas, June 26, 2017. During her speech, Mrs. Taylor praised Col. Shank for his innovation and impact on making Laughlin a better base than when he found it.

LAUGHLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Texas --

Members of Laughlin Air Force Base, the city of Del Rio, Val Verde County, and the state of Texas joined together to cut the ribbon for the Defense Control Center at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas, June 26, 2017. 

The DCC, which is operated by the 47th Security Forces Squadron, houses a state-of-the-art method for securing Laughlin and its Airmen. The safety that this center provides to our SFS brings a peace of mind that Col. Thomas Shank, 47th Flying Training Wing commander, expressed throughout his speech.

“Protecting our military assets, service members, and families is our number one priority,” said Shank.  “This facility will allow our security forces personnel the opportunity to execute their job to the utmost degree.”

Not only does it secure the assets inside Laughlin, but it also secures a long-held relationship between Laughlin and the city of Del Rio.  It’s the same communal relationship that Mr. Robert Garza, the mayor of Del Rio, highlighted.

“This center is the physical embodiment of the cooperation [between] the chamber, city, base, and many others,” said Garza. “What happens to Laughlin affects Del Rio, and what happens to Del Rio affects Laughlin.”

The DCC is a $4.5 million project that was initiated in November 2015.  Efrain Valdez, the Val Verde County judge, recognized that this project was a community affair.

“I can tell you that it took a lot of people to get this project done.  It took the community, business people, city and county,” said Valdez. “I can tell you, if for any reason the Air Force is looking at bringing another wing here, we’re ready for it.”

With the establishment of the DCC, Laughlin will not only secure its Airmen and assets, but will secure its relationship with community partners, which will aid in the longevity of the base.