Braley puts history in perspective
By Staff Sgt. Eric Hamilton , 176th Wing Public Affairs
/ Published March 26, 2008
KULIS AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Alaska -- There are many considerations in moving the 176th Wing from Kulis to Elmendorf AFB. For MSgt. Robert M. Braley, Jr., a technician at Kulis ANGB who works as a civil engineering project manager, preserving the unit history as we move to a new location is critically important. Since his 2001 appointment by Brig. Gen. Gene Ramsay, Braley has performed an important additional duty assignment as the 176th Wing's historical property manager.
Braley's passion for capturing the Wing's historical legacy has led him to take on a wide range of related assignments. For example, one duty requirement is to have every static display in the Kulis Heritage Air Park cleaned, mounted and -- when the time comes -- transferred to new locations on Elmendorf. Braley is also developing Wing Instruction letters detailing how Kulis units will preserve and document the history they take with them in the upcoming move to Elmendorf.
Braley and his colleagues -- MSgt. Mike Phillips, the supervisor of the Wing's Non-Destructive Inspection Lab who doubles as the Wing's alternate historical property manager; and CMSgt. Kevin Brown, the Wing's Airpark Custodian -- also try to find ways to put to use items in the Wings large store of historical artifacts. Last fall, for example, Braley and Phillips created a display commemorating the Alaska Air National Guard's role in ferrying 100 C-123K airplanes to the Philippines for Air Force pilots to fly in Vietnam. The display included a commander's orange flight suit, an original news article from the era detailing the mission, and a photograph of the first Alaska Air Guard crew to perform the mission.
"I'm doing histories on the Aerial Port and the 206th Combat Comm as they prepare to stand down," said Braley, who is certified for his duties through the National Museum of the United States Air Force Museum. This includes a timeline of events for "each and every event they ever had," he said, to include activation, deployments, missions and other activities.