914th Air Refueling Wing prepares for new mission

  • Published
  • By Airman Kylar Vermeulen
  • 914th Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

A group of volunteers across the 914th Air Refueling Wing are working together to repurpose a building on Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station that will be used as an alert facility to support the new and upcoming strategic deterrence mission. 

The facility is intended to house Airmen so they may be ready to execute the mission at a moment’s notice. While the 914 ARW will still provide full-spectrum, rapid global mobility to the joint force, it is shifting to a new focus to be aligned with the needs of our Air Force.

Senior Master Sgt. Brian Starr, 328th Air Refueling Squadron acting First Sergeant, has been leading the repurposing project since the beginning of July 2022. Starr, as well as his team of volunteers, have been putting together living quarters within the facility for Airmen occupying them.
 “They need a place where they can stay, be on alert for 24 hours and have all the necessities,” stated Starr. “They need to have showers or baths, a place to eat, and a workout area.”
The alert facility is being fitted with new furniture and comfort items to make it feel more like home for the service members occupying the living quarters. Comfort is important because these quarters can be occupied for up to months at a time. 

 “Approximately 90% of the equipment used for the project has come from Department of Defense Disposition Services,” stated Lt. Col. Joseph Contino, the 914th Operations Group commander.  “We have been working for the past month to remodel, put beds and televisions in the living quarters, get a day room with comfortable furniture and get an entertainment room.”

The facility will provide a temporary home for Airmen involved in the strategic deterrence mission who will require quick access to the flightline. Contino says their goal is for the 914 ARW to be one of the top units in the enterprise when it comes to the facility, its effectiveness and its response time.

Starr is continually looking for 914 ARW Airmen to volunteer their help with operating the facility during drill weekends. Airmen interested in volunteering can contact the 328th Air Refueling Squadron pending their leadership’s approval.