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Col. Steven Parker to take command of Niagara Falls ARS

by jmaloni

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Fri, Feb 28th 2014 05:40 pm

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Air Force Reserve Col. Steven B. Parker will assume command of the 914th Airlift Wing from Col. Walter Gordon tomorrow, March 1, at 9 a.m.

Gordon retires after 30 years of military service.

Parker most recently served as commander of the 340th Flying Training Group, Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph AFB, where he was directly responsible for the overall success of the reserve associate instructor program. He is a graduate of the Air Force Academy and a command pilot with more than 3,600 flying hours in fighter and trainer aircraft, including combat missions in Operation Southern Watch.

Following the assumption of command ceremony, the wing will recognize Gordon in a retirement ceremony to celebrate a 30-year distinguished career that began with the 107th Fighter Interceptor group in 1982, and culminated with his service as vice commander and commander of the 914th Airlift Wing. During his short time as commander, he led the wing during the government shutdown in October, the successful disassociation from the 107th Airlift Wing and the deployment of more than 100 troops to Southwest Asia in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

"It has been a privilege to work alongside of the fine outstanding, professional members of the 914th Airlift Wing," Gordon said. "I am extremely proud of the outstanding performance of this unit, particularly when operating at minimum manning during the government shutdown last October. Col. Parker will continue the great traditions and success of the 914th Airlift Wing and the Niagara Falls Reserve Station."

Parker, in his new position as installation and wing commander, will be responsible for the daily operations of a base that supports more than 3,000 citizen airmen and soldiers. The Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station is the largest employer in Niagara County with an annual economic impact in excess of $140 million.

The change of command ceremony will take place before the entire unit in formation at the base.

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