XLer of the week: 1st Lt. Brian Kruchkow

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Marco A. Gomez
  • 47th Flying Training Wing Public Affairs

First Lieutenant Brian Kruchkow, 434th Flying Training Squadron T-6A Texan II instructor pilot, was chosen by wing leadership to be the “XLer” of the week, for the week of June 17, 2019, at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas.

The “XLer” award, presented by Col. Todd Dyer, 47th Flying Training Wing vice commander, is given to those who consistently make outstanding contributions to their unit and the Laughlin mission.

Kruchkow was hand-picked to be one of four virtual reality subject matter experts in the 19th Air Force. In this program, he gathered data for $500,000 worth of technology, further pushing Gen. David Goldfein’s top priority of innovation.

“The big things I’ve really been in charge of are making sure the simulators work, and making sure we can capture the data,” he said. “We developed a program where every time the student uses the virtual reality simulator, it will log the activity and we’ll be able to see in 6 months if their grades correlate to that.”

Kruchkow devoted more than 45 hours of volunteering and raised more than $8,000 to the Habitat for Humanity and the American Cancer Society. He also ran an IRONMAN to help raise funds for the organizations.

“I set up a GoFundMe and then people from my church back home said we’ll donate a dollar for every mile you swim, run or bike,” he said. “It was 70 miles on the first one and if I complete the next one in Austria, it will be 140 miles.”

Despite the challenges that come with helping innovate the technology for tomorrow when it comes to pilot training and being a top supporter of the community he’s a part of, Kruchkow has earned this week’s “XLer” of the Week.