19th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
It started out as a normal Friday. Jane Utley, a 19th Contracting Squadron procurement analyst, picked up the base newspaper as she headed to her office. She sat down at her desk and began flipping through the pages of the Combat Airlifter while enjoying her cup of coffee. All of a sudden, she saw a familiar face.
“It was my late husband,” said Utley.
The picture dated back to 1987 when Little Rock Air Force Base personnel were ending their participation in the intercontinental ballistic missile mission. The picture had been included in the weekly paper as part of Little Rock Air Force Base history series to commemorate the base’s 60th anniversary this year. The picture showed the presentation of the key to missile silo 373-6 during the deactivation ceremony of the Titan II missile silo in Antioch, Arkansas, when the Missileers turned over the site to the Civil Engineer Squadron for site decommissioning.
Utley’s husband was the real property officer of the 314th Civil Engineer Squadron at the time.
“It was amazing to see the picture and realize I had the key,” said Utley.
Utley is unsure what her plans are for the key. She’s considering donating it to the Jacksonville History Museum.
The 19th Airlift Wing historian said stories like the Utleys’ are part of Team Little Rock’s rich heritage and hopes more people will share their story as the base’s anniversary approaches.
“Our past experiences have helped us grow and become the people we are today. If we continue to share our memories with others we can all learn by connecting the past with the present. Little Rock Air Force Base personnel have many stories to share that remind us of where we have come from and where we are going,” said Jennifer Blankenship, 19th Airlift Wing base historian.
People who wish to share their Team Little Rock stories can submit them via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.