Growing the LRS family

  • Published
  • By Airman Elijah Van Zandt
  • 341st Missile Wing Public Affairs

Airman 1st Class Orion Jones joined the United States Air Force in October 2019 to improve his family’s quality of life. What he didn’t realize at the time was the Air Force would quickly become part of his family, inspiring him to build a strong foundation for a successful career.

Jones graduated high school in McMinnville, Oregon and started working a variety of jobs, including as a wildland firefighter and eventually as an assistant manager to a local gym. He said after working these jobs for almost three years, he knew it was time for a change.

“I started feeling like I was stuck in my situation at the gym and I wanted to start over fresh with an organization that cared about its people,” he said. “I got the Air Force process started to see if I could make a career out of it.”

His first assignment placed him with the 341st Logistics Readiness Squadron at Malmstrom AFB as a vehicle operator, where he services the base’s fleet of vehicles and transports personnel across base and to the missile fields as needed. LRS is tasked with sustaining the mobility of the installation, which is imperative to keeping the Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missiles safe, secure, reliable and effective at all times.

From the moment he got to base, Jones said he sensed the team comradery in the squadron. He meshed seamlessly into the unit and worked on improving his reliability and performance on the job. He wanted to give that same energy back to his unit, and his supervisor noticed.

“He has such a great attitude and love for his job,” said Tech. Sgt. Anthony Remy, Ground Transportation NCO in charge. “He has strived to become a better Airman and to bring his fellow Airmen up to his level and always with a smile on his face.”

According to Remy, the Ground Transportation team at Malmstrom is made up of “hard working individuals that always get the mission done and would not be the same team without A1C Jones.”

“Without a doubt, this career field is a big family,” Jones said. “We’re always working together and backing each other up because there is a no-man-left-behind mentality.”

Jones has also recently been tasked with an additional duty: overseeing cargo shipments and routing them to their final destinations on base.

“There are four sweeps a day where we deliver packages that arrive to our cargo hangar,” said Jones. “Sometimes we get mission capable deliveries, where we stop everything we’re doing and get those delivered as fast as possible. We understand the mission comes first.”

Along with spending time with his newfound family in his shop, Jones said he looks forward to spending time outside of work with his fiancé, as they prepare for their wedding in June.

“It feels great to finally start a new chapter,” he said. “I’m overjoyed that we can start our life together while I’m also building my career in the Air Force.”

He’s now been stationed at Malmstrom for over a year, growing personally and professionally in his families.

“I have a great quality of life and I’m also able to spend time with my family both in the shop and off-duty. I know how lucky I am.”