RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, GERMANY --
Col. Bradley L. Spears assumed command of the 521st Air Mobility Operation Wing during a change of command ceremony at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, June 28. Maj. Gen. Christopher Bence, U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Center commander, presided over the ceremony in which Col. Thomas M. Cooper relinquished command of the 521 AMOW to Sprears.
Spears, who previously served as the wing's vice commander, now leads the 521 AMOW whose mission is to provide all command and control, en route maintenance support, and air transportation services for theater and strategic air mobility missions in Europe and Southwest Asia.
Upon assuming command, Spears addressed the Airmen of the 521 AMOW.
“To the men and women of the 521 AMOW, you are absolutely awesome,” Spears said. “There is not another nation in the world that is capable of generating and sustaining 'Rapid Global Mobility,' and you are the key and backbone of that capability.”
During the ceremony, Bence lauded Spears as the perfect person for the job.
“With his homegrown knowledge and extensive mobility experience, Col. Spears is truly suited to become commander of this out-front wing, full of outstanding Airmen and families,” said Bence.
Over the last two years, the 521 AMOW Airmen supported over 96,000 missions, moving over 1 million
passengers along with 386,000 tons of cargo.
“You truly are bold Airmen…shaping AMC’s premier en route for tomorrow,” Bence said.
Upon relinquishing command of the 521 AMOW, Cooper retired from the Air Force after 30 years.
During his two-year tenure as commander, the wing earned their seventh Meritorious Unit Award.
”My final thanks to you, the Airmen of the 521 AMOW. Each day you come to work with a positive, hard-working attitude, ready to meet the challenge of supporting this wing, the Air Force and the joint force,”
Cooper said. “And you do it superbly.”
Headquartered at Ramstein AB, the 521 AMOW consists of more than 2,700 personnel divided into two groups and 10 squadrons spread across seven bases, and oversees the Expeditionary Center and Air Mobility Command’s en-route operations. The wing provides all command and control, en-route maintenance support, and air transportation services for theater and strategic air mobility missions in Europe and Southwest Asia.