Each year, the Spokane region gathers to celebrate our nation’s military at Let Freedom Ring, an awards program that honors local Active Duty, Guard, and Reserve members of the armed forces.
One of our initiatives at GSI is to advocate for Fairchild Air Force Base, the largest single-site employer in the region. With more than 5,000 Active Duty personnel serving at the base, and with additional value driven by the SERE (Survival, Evasion, Resistance, Escape) survival school, Fairchild generates an economic impact of more than $1 billion, and is tied to thousands of jobs for our region.
GSI has a long history of advocating for Fairchild, and can be seen through our Forward Fairchild committee and Operation Spokane Heroes, which is chaired by Sandy Kates. Join us in honoring and celebrating our local military personnel by registering for Let Freedom Ring.
Each year, military personnel are nominated by their commanding officers. From there, a panel of five civilian judges interviews the nominees, who are judged according to their job responsibilities and accomplishments, leadership qualities, civilian and military self-improvement efforts, and their community involvement. From these highly qualified nominees, six individuals are chosen to represent active, Guard and Reserve members.
The event will feature speaker, Brigadier General Roger H. Watkins (Retired) from the United States Air Force. Watkins was the Deputy Commander and Chief of Staff, Joint Warfare Centre, Supreme Allied Command for Transformation, NATO, Stavanger, Norway. In addition to prestigious assignments across the world, Watkins was twice assigned to Fairchild Air Force Base, from 1995-1997, and again from 2006-2008. During his second assignment at Fairchild, he served as Vice Commander of the 92nd Air Refueling Wing.
Thank you to our Major Sponsor, Global Credit Union. Garco Construction is our Supporting Sponsor. We’d also like to offer a special thank you to the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve for making our event possible.
The award recipients will be honored at the Let Freedom Ring awards 7:30 a.m., April 14 at Northern Quest Resort and Casino. Award recipients will also be honored during the Lilac Festival Week at the All City-Civic Military luncheon on Thursday, May 18 and by riding in the Armed Forces Torchlight Parade Saturday, May 20.
Here is a full list of this year’s nominees:
Staff Sergeant Alton Currie
Staff Sergeant Amanda J. Hudson
Technical Sergeant Ben Davis
Damage Controlman First Class Petty Officer Brad Phelen
Staff Sergeant Cortt M. Hollick
Airman First Class Devin Mitchell
Sergeant First Class Eduardo V. Garza
Technical Sergeant Garry McLean
Technical Sergeant James F. Weathers, Jr.
Master Sergeant Jason Clapper
Petty Officer Second Class Jerome L. Boyance
Staff Sergeant Joshua P. Thaxton
Aviation Boatswain’s Mate Second Class Kerry Hannah
Senior Airman Mackenzie K. Richardson
Machinery Repairman Second Class Petty Officer Michael Roberts
Senior Airman Rachel R. Corfoot
Engineers Aid Petty Officer Third Class Ramil Sacpopo
Hospital Corpsman Chief Petty Officer Robert Walker
Senior Airman Shannonrachel M. Howe
Senior Master Sergeant Steven D. Webster
Master Sergeant Trey A. Horn
Staff Sergeant Tyler O. Garcia