Airman joins 107th; contunues family tradition
By Senior Master Sgt. Ray Lloyd, 107th AW
/ Published February 21, 2015
Niagara Falls, NY -- Airman 1st Class Luke Moyer raised his right hand and swore in to the 107th Airlift Wing New York Air National Guard on Feb. 12, 2015, becoming the fifth in his family to carry on the military tradition.
His family was there for the enlistment ceremony and they all had a story to share. Master Sgt. Catrina Smith-Coffey, 107th Readiness and Emergency Management Superintendent, is Luke's aunt and remembers when she first joined the unit. "I saw a commercial on TV and went to a recruiters' office for some information. Next thing I knew, I was swearing in later that day."
Airman Moyer took a more reserved approach towards his decision. "I am excited to be a part of the history. I thought a long time about this. It took me 3 years to decide", Moyer said. "I plan on going back to college to study engineering when I return from training."
Airman Moyer's mother was happy in this moment with her family. She displayed a confident smile knowing that her son joining was a good decision. "The air base is home to us because we pretty much grew up here," said Cindy Moyer. "This was dad's work."
Retired Chief Master Sgt. Keith Coffey was the eldest member of the family and is Airman Moyer's grandfather. He recalled his enlistment as well. "I enlisted in 1966 during the Vietnam Crisis. I had a break for about five months and then joined the 914th in March of 1971," says Keith. "I deployed in support of many missions; Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. Then I retired in March of 2006 as a Chief Master Sergeant and the Aircraft Maintenance Superintendent."
Airman Moyer's great-great-grandfather and great-grandfather served in the military as well.
Airmen Moyer will receive his Basic Training at Lackland AFB in Texas and then proceed to technical school to learn his new career in structural specialty. He will learn to manage, construct, repairs, and modify structural systems of wooden, masonry, metal, and concrete buildings as well as fabricating and repairing components of buildings, utility systems, and real property. He will then return to Niagara to put those skills to work for the unit.
"I think this opportunity will be good for Luke and that Luke would be good for the Air Force", says Master Sgt. Coffey. "The 107th has a long history with family members serving. This what makes our unit so special."
The New York Air National Guard's 107th Airlift Wing shares Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station with the Air Force Reserve's 914th Airlift Wing. The unit is currently in the process of transitioning to a mission flying remotely piloted MQ-9 aircraft after previously flying the C-130 transport aircraft and the KC-135 refueling plane.