Chief Master Sergeant (Ret.) Cary Hatzinger enlisted in the Air Force at age 23 and served at a variety of bases in Florida, Nevada, Utah, South Korea, Germany and California until he retired in 2009 as the 62nd Airlift Wing command chief at then-McChord Air Force Base, Wash.
The best part of being a command chief, he said, was working with and taking care of Airmen. “I always remembered how much it meant to me when someone senior would come up to me and thank me for something,” Hatzinger said. “So I made it my point, wherever I was, to thank Airmen for what they were doing…whether it was parking cars for the Air Force ball, deploying, or just doing their day-to-day mission.” Heritage and service are things Hatzinger thinks epitomize the Air Force.
“I think that in this day and age it’s really easy to lose touch with our traditions and our heritage. I would encourage all leaders to bring Airmen up to respect and cherish that heritage. What we do is we serve. We serve the American public, we serve those we work with, and nothing is more noble than that.” Hatzinger currently serves as the 62nd Maintenance Group chief of plans, scheduling, documentation and analysis at McChord Field, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.