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Signs of support from members of the community

Nathan Defreitas, 8, sits in the cockpit of a C-130H Hercules aircraft with Colton Fillmore, 8, looking on behind him at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4, 2014. Defreitas and Fillmore both  participated in a base tour given to employees of Fillmore Express Inc. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Nathan Defreitas, 8, sits in the cockpit of a C-130H Hercules aircraft with Colton Fillmore, 8, looking on behind him at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4, 2014. Defreitas and Fillmore both participated in a base tour given to employees of Fillmore Express Inc. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Colton Fillmore, 8, sits in the cockpit of a C-130H Hercules aircraft with Nathan Defreitas, 8, directly behind him, and Landon Fillmore, 6, on the left at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4, 2014. The boys participated in a base tour given to employees and their families of Fillmore Express Inc. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Colton Fillmore, 8, sits in the cockpit of a C-130H Hercules aircraft with Nathan Defreitas, 8, directly behind him, and Landon Fillmore, 6, on the left at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4, 2014. The boys participated in a base tour given to employees and their families of Fillmore Express Inc. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

(Uniformed Airmen from left to right) Chief Master Sgt. Patrick Wheeler and Airman 1st Class Eric Buhagiar, both of the 103rd Maintenance Squadron, along with Col. Frederick Miclon, 103rd Airlift Wing vice commander, pose with Fillmore Express Inc. employees and their families behind one of the signs company employees posted outside of their work place in support of the Airmen assigned to the Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4, 2014. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

(Uniformed Airmen from left to right) Chief Master Sgt. Patrick Wheeler and Airman 1st Class Eric Buhagiar, both of the 103rd Maintenance Squadron, along with Col. Frederick Miclon, 103rd Airlift Wing vice commander, pose with Fillmore Express Inc. employees and their families behind one of the signs company employees posted outside of their work place in support of the Airmen assigned to the Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4, 2014. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

(From left to right) Colton Fillmore, 8, Nathan Defreitas, 8, and Landon Fillmore, 6, take a seat during their tour in a C-130H Herculees aircraft at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4, 2014. The boys are family members of employees of Fillmore Express Inc. who took part in a base tour. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

(From left to right) Colton Fillmore, 8, Nathan Defreitas, 8, and Landon Fillmore, 6, take a seat during their tour in a C-130H Hercules aircraft at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4, 2014. The boys are family members of employees of Fillmore Express Inc. who took part in a base tour. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Leadership from Fillmore Express Inc., a neighboring local business, recently installed signs outside of their business supporting the Airmen assigned to Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby Conn.  The signs are highly visible to unit members and have instilled in them a sense of community support for their mission.  (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Leadership from Fillmore Express Inc., a neighboring local business, recently installed signs outside of their business supporting the Airmen assigned to Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby Conn. The signs are highly visible to unit members and have instilled in them a sense of community support for their mission. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Chief Master Sgt. Patrick Wheeler, assigned to the 103rd Maintenance Squadron, and Tech. Sgt. Tufic Paone, loadmaster with the 103rd Operations Group, help conduct a tour given to Fillmore Express Inc. employees and their family members on a C-130H Hercules aircraft at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4. 2014. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Chief Master Sgt. Patrick Wheeler, assigned to the 103rd Maintenance Squadron, and Tech. Sgt. Tufic Paone, loadmaster with the 103rd Operations Group, help conduct a tour given to Fillmore Express Inc. employees and their family members on a C-130H Hercules aircraft at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4. 2014. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Scott Fillmore, operations manager for Fillmore Express Inc., grins after receiving a 103rd Airlift Wing challenge coin from Col. Frederick Miclon, vice commander of the 103rd Airlift Wing, at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4. 2014. Fillmore, along with his co-workers and their respective families, were invited to take part in a base tour to thank them for the signs they posted outside of their business showing support to the Airmen of the Connecticut Air National Guard. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Scott Fillmore, operations manager for Fillmore Express Inc., grins after receiving a 103rd Airlift Wing challenge coin from Col. Frederick Miclon, vice commander of the 103rd Airlift Wing, at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4. 2014. Fillmore, along with his co-workers and their respective families, were invited to take part in a base tour to thank them for the signs they posted outside of their business showing support to the Airmen of the Connecticut Air National Guard. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Colton Fillmore, 8, Landon Fillmore, 6, and Nathan Defreitas, 8, smile from the back of a C-130H Hercules aircraft at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., on Oct. 4. 2014. The boys are family members of employees of Fillmore Express Inc. who took part in a base tour. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Colton Fillmore, 8, Landon Fillmore, 6, and Nathan Defreitas, 8, smile from the back of a C-130H Hercules aircraft at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., on Oct. 4. 2014. The boys are family members of employees of Fillmore Express Inc. who took part in a base tour. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Employees of Fillmore Express Inc. and their families pose with their 103rd Airlift Wing tour guides (bottom left, Tech. Sgt. Tufic Paone; bottom right, Master Sgt. Bryan Watson; top left, 1st Lt. Alan Bolduc; and top right, Col. Frederick Miclon) after completing their tour of a C-130H Hercules aircraft at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4, 2014. Employees of Fillmore and their families were invited on a base tour to thank them for the signs they posted outside of their business supporting the Airmen of Bradley Air National Guard Base. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

Employees of Fillmore Express Inc. and their families pose with their 103rd Airlift Wing tour guides (bottom left, Tech. Sgt. Tufic Paone; bottom right, Master Sgt. Bryan Watson; top left, 1st Lt. Alan Bolduc; and top right, Col. Frederick Miclon) after completing their tour of a C-130H Hercules aircraft at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Conn., Oct. 4, 2014. Employees of Fillmore and their families were invited on a base tour to thank them for the signs they posted outside of their business supporting the Airmen of Bradley Air National Guard Base. (Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce)

BRADLEY AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE - East Granby, Conn. -- 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.