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Newest NY airmen featured during Buffalo Bills halftime

by jmaloni
Thu, Dec 2nd 2010 03:55 pm
by Staff Sgt. Peter Dean

107th Airlift Wing New York Air National Guard

The New York Air National Guard's newest members were the halftime show Sunday, Nov. 27, when the Buffalo Bills took on the Pittsburgh Steelers at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

Six new members of the 107th Airlift Wing, based at Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station, enlisted in the New York Air National Guard during a ceremony at midfield prior to the game. Their enlistment was broadcast over the Jumbotron during halftime.

"This is cool! Enlisting on the Bills field," said Airman Cara Sturdivant. "I'll remember this forever, get a picture of me."

Sturdivant and five other enlistees took to the field hours before fans arrived. After walking through the same tunnel players use, and forming up on the 50-yard line, they took their oath of enlistment from Lt. Col. James Hoch of the 107th as family members and friends looked on.

"I'm very proud of Cara," said her father, Elbert. "I think she made the right decision, the Guard is a good choice for her."

"Mom, this is so cool," Airman Joshua Velez told his mother via cell phone. "This is amazing."

After the ceremony, enlistees and guests were invited to stay and join the sellout crowd to cheer on their hometown team, compliments of the Buffalo Bills.

"There we are!" screamed Senior Airman Paul Boser, pointing up to the Jumbotron as the pregame enlistment ceremony was broadcast for the 70,000-plus fans in attendance during the halftime show. "Get out the banner, they're gonna pan over us."

"Partnering with the Bills gives the enlistees a memory that lasts a lifetime," said Tech Sgt. Sylvia Kirchner, a 107th recruiter. "It also gives the 107th invaluable exposure and recognizes the commitment that these young men and women have made."

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