LAUGHLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Texas --
Airman 1st Class Justin Welch, 47th Flying Training Wing Command Post emergency actions controller, was chosen by wing leadership to be the “XLer” of the week, for the week of May 20, 2019, at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas.
The “XLer” award, presented by Col. Lee Gentile, 47th Flying Training Wing commander, is given to those who consistently make outstanding contributions to their unit and the Laughlin mission.
Welch’s selfless contribution to the wing and his team ensures base personnel are notified on any emergency events. During Welch’s time at Laughlin, he’s alerted the base and local community on 7 severe weather incidents in the recent months through an automated phone call and text system as well as the local “giant voice” system.
“It is very important we let people know ASAP,” he said. If it’s a tornado, it can come at any minute, we are definitely the bridge of information between the situation-at-hand and the base populous. The commanders rely on us to be their eyes and ears in case of an emergency.”
According to his supervisors, Welch has a passion for serving, volunteering and helping out where he can. Since July 2018, Welch has logged countless hours in Laughlin’s Base Airmen Against Drunk Driving program.
“I haven’t had a lot of help before I got into the Air Force, so I take every opportunity I get to help people out,” he said. “Alcohol can really mess someone up, if they’re not careful they are either going to get injured, or injure someone else.”
Welch has not only earned the “XLer of the week” award but two BAADD volunteer awards as well as the 47th Wing Staff Agencies Airman of the third quarter in 2018.
“One of the things that has stood out to me is his great attitude and determination to get things accomplished and go above and beyond,” said Tech. Sgt. David Jeffcoat, 47th Command Post NCO in charge of command and control operations. “He’s one of the most motivated Airmen I’ve seen in my career.”
Welch’s appreciation for his coworkers and supervisors, who help him day-in and day-out be the best Airman he can be, carries weight in regards to his work and earning of the XLer award.
“I really couldn’t have done it without my supervisors,” he said with a big smile. “It feels more like a team effort even though I received the award.”