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Military raises security measures at bases nationwide

Military raises security measures at bases nationwide

The four-star commander who oversees U.S. military operations in North America ordered domestic military bases nationwide to increase their force protection measures amid heightened concern about terrorist threats.

Adm. Bill Gortney, commander of the Colorado-based U.S. Northern Command, raised military installations' force protection level to "Bravo" after months of maintaining it at "Alpha," the lowest level of security, a defense official said Friday.

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Robins F-15 shops doing more work on time

Robins workers in the F-15 shops reached a milestone.

After more than a year of changing the way they make repairs, they're not only producing more aircraft, but producing them on time.

The F-15 maintenance workers are known as the Eagle Keepers. They are the men and women who tear down, build-up and return to flight the F-15s at Robins.

But for several years, they didn't return enough of them to the Air Force fleet. For 22 months none, as in zero, went back to service on-time.

That's changing, says Air Logistics Complex Commander Brigadier General Walter Lindsley.

Behind the Lines: Air Force Reserve video production


Each month, we take you Behind the Lines at Robins Air Force Base to feature the work of the 22,000 employees there.

The jobs range from the exotic to the obscure, and some people do work similar to what we do at 13WMAZ. We visited the Air Force Reserve's Video Production Unit to see the many ways they share their mission and message.

When we arrived, we watched what looked like a real broadcast. The host on the set said, "Good morning New York. Thank you so much for joining us today."

Few concerned about being told "have a blessed day"

UPDATE: Robins Air Force Base officials reversed themselves late Thursday, saying it's OK for gate guards to greet people with "Have a blessed day."

That came several hours after a base spokesman said they had banned the phrase because they believed it violated Air Force regulations against endorsement of religion. Dozens of people criticized the ban, online and in person, after 13WMAZ reported on it earlier Thursday.

Robins released this statement at 6:17 p.m. Thursday:

"We are a professional organization defended by a professional force. Our defenders portray a professional image that represents a base all of Middle Georgia can be proud of. Defenders have been asked to use the standard phrase 'Welcome to Team Robins' in their greeting and can add various follow-on greetings as long as they remain courteous and professional.

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Robins AFB personnel banned from giving unwelcome "blessings"

Robins gate guards are no longer allowed to use the phrase "have a blessed day," when greeting visitors and employees as they drive in after a complaint from an unnamed military member.

The individual complained on the Military Religious Freedom Foundation website, saying they were greeted on "no less than 15 occasions over the last two weeks" with the phrase.

The complainant did not think it was appropriate due to his "non-religious nature."

Hurdles slow G-RAMP's pace

14 years ago, a former Warner Robins mayor came up with an idea: use 91 acres of city-owned property adjacent to Robins Air Force Base to develop private industry. The businesses would add jobs and complement base missions.

Since then, the city has spent more than $230,000 toward the effort, known as G-RAMP. That stands for Georgia-Robins Aerospace Maintenance Partnership.

Years later, the land, on the northwest corner of the base, is still vacant. It looks much the same as when the idea came about.

The vast majority of people driving the perimeter road of Robins would never notice the headstones just behind the fence.

The Thomas & Sullivan Cemetery sits in the shadows cast by looming Air Force hangars.

Redevelopment Agency Director for the city said on a recent afternoon, "It's been around long before we have."

Behind the Lines: Painting planes a patriotic duty

People recognize the grayish-blue of Air Force aircraft around the world.

Many of those planes get their trademark color inside hangars at Robins Air Force Base.

The people in the Corrosion Control shop call it their patriotic duty to put a top notch coat of paint on every plane.

Inside Building 89, the hands of a 20-man crew fly over, around, and under the body of a C-130 aircraft.

Its makeover in the paint shop is the last stop before she returns from maintenance to duty.

"We take a lot of pride in making sure the plane does look good," says painter Tim Davis.

Davis compares it to an industrial-sized arts and crafts operation replete with stencils and an armory of paint. However, the job lacks the safety of an 8x10 canvas and brush strokes.

"It can be a very dangerous process," says Terry Lowe.