By Staff Sgt. Jarrod Chavana
Air Force Social Media
When you join any branch of the U.S. military, you take an oath of enlistment. Sometimes this oath is conducted in a private ceremony with only a handful of individuals, but other times it is performed in front of sold-out stadiums. I’ve gathered a few photos highlighting our Delayed Enlistment Program enlistees who are taking their first steps toward enlisting in the Air Force.
The first time someone has the opportunity they will resemble their civilian side. The second time they say the oath will be at basic training graduation, which signifies their transformation from civilian to Airman.
The oath of enlistment can be performed anywhere, and sometimes there are opportunities to perform it in front of huge audiences.
Many people have seen it conducted before baseball, football and even NASCAR events.
One great aspect of taking the oath after your first enlistment is someone can make it memorable.
These Airmen reenlisted during their deployments. Not only are they honoring our country, they are making an added commitment to protect it while deployed.
Sometimes you have those people who like to add a little flair to their oath. This Air Force PJ performed the ceremony and then jumped from a C-130! Go big or go home.
If you’ve ever taken the oath of enlistment, feel free to share your story with us!
Tech. Sgt. Steve Grever
Air Force Public Affairs Agency
Re-enlisting in the Air Force is an honorable and celebrated occasion for many Airmen. It signifies their continued commitment to serve and protect the nation from all enemies who threaten our democracy. Federal law actually requires all service members who enlist or re-enlist to take the Oath of Enlistment, which states:
I, (name), do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. (So help me God.)
I spoke these words for the first time in 1997. I was going through the Military Entrance Processing Station, or MEPS, in Salt Lake City, Utah, just before I made my journey to basic military training. Over the course of my 16-year career in the Air Force, I’ve re-enlisted four times, and each time I took the oath and reflected on its meaning and on my commitment to serve.
These photos of deployed pararescueman Senior Airman Kristopher Tomes re-enlisting aboard a HC-130 really impacted me because he took that same oath. It is what sets us apart as military members. Taking the oath instills a sense of pride and camaraderie for everyone who wears the uniform. We understand what it’s like to serve something greater than ourselves, and it’s our privilege to be a part of the world’s greatest Air Force.
PHOTOS: U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Kristopher Tomes, a pararescueman with the 82nd Expeditionary Rescue Squadron, re-enlists aboard a HC-130 minutes before jumping near Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, Nov. 19, 2013. Tomes is deployed from the 308th Rescue Squadron and has performed more than 150 jumps. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Staci Miller/Released)