Beale chief receives his star
The commander of the 9th Reconnaissance Wing at Beale Air Force Base likely got the longest promotion ceremony of his career Monday.
In a room full of well-wishers, H.D. Polumbo Jr., finished a brigadier general promotion ceremony that started Thursday on the other side of the country - in Virginia.
“This was a little bit longer ceremony than you are probably used to,” joked Polumbo.
The ceremony usually lasts less than one hour. But because his superior officers were in Virginia and his family is on the East Coast, Polumbo decided to start the ceremony there, he told the audience of airmen and local dignitaries.
The ceremony concluded with the pinning of stars onto Polumbo's shirt by 2nd Lt. Ashley Peltier, deputy chief of 9th public affairs, and Airman 1st Class Dustin Babcock, a cook for the 9th Support Services Squadron.
Polumbo, an F-16 fighter pilot, took command of the 9th Reconnaissance Wing in May after he left a position in the Pentagon.
He said working together as a team, having pride and being successful is particularly important these days.
“We have to be that way right now. It's a tough time to be in the military,” Polumbo said. “There are constant rotations, constant separations from our families. It is difficult, and we are really facing some continuing battles (overseas). It won't get easier any time soon.”
Polumbo credited his success to his family's willingness to go along, as well as their sacrifices.
“It's the small team, as part of a big team, as part of the big mission where I would say again, pride really does matter,” he said. “I am really proud to serve, and I am proud to be a part of this team.”