Signs of support from members of the community

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce
  • 103rd Airlift Wing, Public Affairs
As Guardsmen leave Bradley Air National Guard Base, they see two signs that are prominently displayed on the property across the street. One sign's message is "Aim High...Fly, Fight, Win," and the other sign includes an American flag and the message, "CT Residents Thank You For Your Service." The signs belong to Fillmore Express Inc., a small business located at 71 Nicholson Road. The signs have had a positive impact for the Airmen assigned to the base, instilling a sense of local community support for their mission. As a show of gratitude, the Fillmore employees and their family members were invited to participate in a base tour here, Oct. 4, 2014.

"We've been neighbors forever and there's a lot of stuff going on overseas," said Scott Fillmore, operations manager for Fillmore Express Inc.

I just thought it was necessary to put the signs up, said Fillmore. I asked Chief Master Sgt. Patrick Wheeler what the Air Force motto was and what the base colors were, so I figured we could make signs working with that.  Ultimately, I just wanted to say thank you in a simple way so everybody on the base could be aware that we support them, said Fillmore.

Fillmore Express Inc. is a local trucking company that delivers refrigerated food to the New York, New Jersey, and Boston areas typically delivering foods to supermarkets and grocery store chains. It's a small company with 12 employees, including truck drivers and office staff.

My father started the company 45 years ago, and now it's a family business, Fillmore said. Where our location is now right across the street from the base has been interesting for us. We all always look over and try to catch a glimpse of the planes, so having this opportunity to actually be here and see the planes is awesome, said Fillmore. I've never been this close to a military plane.

The base tour included a visit to the hangar and a tour of a C-130H Hercules aircraft. Fillmore, along with his employees and family members, were able to sit in the cockpit and walk through the aircraft while hearing about the Hercules' mission and capabilities.

Col. Frederick Miclon, vice commander of the 103rd Airlift Wing, participated in the C-130H portion of the tour and presented Fillmore with a 103rd Airlift Wing challenge coin, thanking him for his support to the Bradley Air National Guard Base and it's Airmen.

As the tour concluded, Fillmore and the rest of his tour group expressed their excitement about having been on base.

We are here for you all, said Fillmore. We are here to help out if you ever need any help from us and we're always looking out for you.