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2nd BW Airmen step up to help commissary workers

Tech. Sgt. Tom Parsons, 2nd Mission Support Group executive assistant, hands out sanitizing wipes at the commissary at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., March 24, 2020. The Barksdale commissary has implemented a number of safety guidelines to stop the spread of germs, including: sanitizing registers and door handles more frequently than normal, marking lines on the floor to ensure people keep a six foot distance and even making routine intercom announcements to remind customers of common health guidelines. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jacob B. Wrightsman)

Tech. Sgt. Tom Parsons, 2nd Mission Support Group executive assistant, hands out sanitizing wipes at the commissary at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., March 24, 2020. The Barksdale commissary has implemented a number of safety guidelines to stop the spread of germs, including: sanitizing registers and door handles more frequently than normal, marking lines on the floor to ensure people keep a six foot distance and even making routine intercom announcements to remind customers of common health guidelines. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jacob B. Wrightsman)

Tech. Sgt. Tom Parsons, 2nd Mission Support Group executive assistant, hands out sanitizing wipes at the commissary at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., March 24, 2020. The Barksdale commissary has implemented a number of safety guidelines to stop the spread of germs, including: sanitizing registers and door handles more frequently than normal, marking lines on the floor to ensure people keep a six foot distance and even making routine intercom announcements to remind customers of common health guidelines. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jacob B. Wrightsman)

Tech. Sgt. Tom Parsons, 2nd Mission Support Group executive assistant, hands out sanitizing wipes at the commissary at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., March 24, 2020. The Barksdale commissary has implemented a number of safety guidelines to stop the spread of germs, including: sanitizing registers and door handles more frequently than normal, marking lines on the floor to ensure people keep a six foot distance and even making routine intercom announcements to remind customers of common health guidelines. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jacob B. Wrightsman)

Chief Master Sgt. Joshua Swanger, 2nd Bomb Wing command chief, checks an identification card at the commissary at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., March 21, 2020. To mitigate the influx of shoppers and to keep Airmen and their families safe, Barksdale’s commissary began checking identification cards at the front doors, to ensure only authorized personnel were accessing the store. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jacob B. Wrightsman)

Chief Master Sgt. Joshua Swanger, 2nd Bomb Wing command chief, checks an identification card at the commissary at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., March 21, 2020. To mitigate the influx of shoppers and to keep Airmen and their families safe, Barksdale’s commissary began checking identification cards at the front doors, to ensure only authorized personnel were accessing the store. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jacob B. Wrightsman)

BARKSDALE AIR FORCE BASE, La. --

It’s an Air Force core value to place service before self and at Barksdale you don’t have to look very far to see that value in action.

In the wake of Barksdale’s public health emergency, Airmen from the 2nd Bomb Wing have stepped up to assist commissary workers in efforts to keep the store stocked and sanitized.

“It definitely helps out our wingmen,” said Airman 1st Class Cole Montgomery, 2nd Munitions Squadron maintenance technician. “This is where they need me right now and it’s the right thing to do.”

When the National State of Emergency was issued by President Donald Trump, and subsequently the Public Health emergency on base, shoppers flocked to the commissary and emptied its shelves.

“At the beginning, it was very chaotic, there were lines wrapping around the store,” said Charles Weeks, commissary director. “Luckily, it has died down and we’ve implemented some changes that have worked out for us.”

To mitigate the influx of shoppers and to keep Airmen and their families safe, Barksdale’s commissary began checking identification cards at the front doors to ensure only authorized personnel were accessing the store. This added an unfortunate stress to the daily routine of commissary workers, that is until Barksdale Airmen decided to step in and help.

“We’re just trying to free up some of the commissary workers so they can unload trucks a little more efficiently and keep product on the shelves,” said Chief Master Sergeant Joshua Swanger, 2nd BW command chief.

“It’s been a huge help having the Airmen help us out,” Weeks said.“We didn’t have the manpower to do everything, so by them stepping in, it’s helped operations run as smoothly as they can.”

The Barksdale commissary has implemented a number of safety guidelines to stop the spread of germs, including: sanitizing registers and door handles more frequently than normal, marking lines on the floor with tape to ensure people keep a six-foot distance and even making routine intercom announcements to remind customers of common health guidelines.

“We are here for the customers,” Weeks said. “We are doing everything we can to keep our people safe.”

So, in the face of this particular enemy, the Barksdale community continues the fight not as individuals, but together.