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What we need is an 'Ammo Call'

  • Published
  • By Maj. Louis Rognoni III
  • 90th Munitions Squadron
For those of you who do not know, F. E. Warren Air Force Base has a small contingent of munitions systems specialists, also known as "ammo troops." Ammo is responsible for maintaining the U.S. Air Force's entire munitions stockpile, including everything from bullets to bombs. Ammo's function here is to provide munitions support for all organizations on base and at Camp Guernsey, Wyo. Ammo troops are a rowdy, but good-natured bunch of people with a reputation for working hard and playing even harder.

One thing I've always loved about my career field is it has a very close family mentality. We take care of each other through times of need, deployments and family emergencies. Ammo troops always make sure everyone gets home safely, no matter what; being a good wingman is bred into us from day one. Our camaraderie has always been something I've been extremely proud of.

This camaraderie comes from a career field overflowing with traditions. Our shell and flame insignia became the official emblem of the U.S. Army Ordnance Corps in May, 1883. We host softball tournaments -- aptly named "Ammo Bowl" -- throughout the world. At Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, a wild pig named Shakey has become part of the ammo family; and no one knows which number Shakey we're on, but I do know the one I met in 1995 sure tasted great slow roasted with pineapple and boonie peppers.

My favorite tradition is the "Ammo Call." During those calls, oftentimes our mantra is yelled out, loudly and proudly. We're not trying to degrade any other unite while doing this, we're just proud of who we are. Over time, our get-togethers have become known as Ammo Calls. They are held for many reasons, including promotion parties, hail-and-farewell ceremonies, the end of an exercise or a successful inspection, just to name a few. Sometimes, we get together with friends and family for no reason other than to just enjoy each other's company, or to take a break before we snap. We play pickup games of football, throw horseshoes, sing karaoke, play cards or whatever else it takes to have a good time; we might eat a little too much, yell a little too loudly and might even get to see the sun come up before the party ends. The best part about an Ammo Call is typically all ammo troops, from airman basic to the squadron commander, will come out and enjoy the festivities for a few hours.

The point of my story is not to brag, I just wanted to take this opportunity to share what we do with the entire wing. Regardless of what Air Force Specialty Code you hold, I think we all could use an Ammo Call. You're all welcome at ours.