News From Terre Haute, Indiana


December 8, 2013

Honor awaits 181st Intelligence Wing

Air Guardsmen receive awards at Hometown Hero Salute

TERRE HAUTE — As he sat on his mother’s lap inside the Air National Guard Base at Terre Haute International Airport-Hulman Field on Sunday, little Henry Shultz was all smiles as he waited for the start of a ceremony recognizing his father’s service to the community and the country.

The 10-month-old’s father, Tech. Sgt. Elliot Shultz, was among about 120 men and women who were honored during the 181st Intelligence Wing’s Hometown Heroes Salute.

“The purpose of today’s ceremony is to recognize the 181st Intelligence Wing’s airmen who have deployed for 30 days or more since 9/11 in support of a contingency operation,” said 1st Lt. Brandy Fultz, during the opening remarks.

Kristie Shultz, Henry’s mother, said her husband was deployed to Kuwait.

“We obviously are very proud of my husband, his father,” who has made a lot of sacrifices, she said.

“It’s nice to be a part of a bigger family here,” she said, proud of her husband and proud to be a part of the unit.

Col. Donald Bonte, 181st Intelligence Wing commander, also spoke of family.

“The 181st Intelligence Wing is truly a family. ... The dedication of our members, the understanding of their families and the support of the community, our extended family [are] critical in order for the Wing to continue performing its state and federal mission,” he said.

The Hometown Heroes Salute is a campaign to honor airmen, their families “and others who do not wear the uniform but sacrifice nonetheless,” according to its website.

In the presence of their loved ones, the airmen received special items, based on a three-tier structure: The first tier gift was a framed coin and letter of appreciation from Air National Guard leaders given to those who served 30 to 179 consecutive days.

The second tier was a framed U.S. flag for those who served 180 to 365 consecutive days. And the third tier was an eagle statue for service of 366 or more consecutive days.

“I am honored and humbled that our base receives so much support and that we have this opportunity to recognize the hard work and dedication of our outstanding airmen,” said Bonte, who handed out the awards.

One of the recipients of a framed coin and appreciation letter was Staff Sgt. Chris Lewis, who has been serving for seven years.

“Personally, for me, the greater honor is serving the country,” he told the Tribune-Star.

The Hometown Heroes program was formally launched by the Air National Guard in 2009. The last HHS ceremony conducted by the 181st Intelligence Wing was in 2010.

Another award recipient was Airman 1st Class Leah Puckett, who has been with the 181st Intelligence Wing for three years.

“I think it’s really amazing that they put on this kind of program to pay tribute to all of us who are able to give our time serving our country,” she said.

“It’s an honor,” she added.

In addition to the airmen, families were also honored.

Spouses/ significant others and children received special items (also based on three tiers) either before or after the award ceremony. Among the items they were given were logo-inscribed crystal bowls, HHS logo lapel pins, HHS logo charm bracelets and HHS logo dog tags.

A special award called “Center of Influence” was also presented by the airmen to “someone they feel supported them and their family during their extended absence,” Fultz, the emcee, said. They received an HHS logo medallion.

Toward the end of the ceremony, Terre Haute Mayor Duke Bennett received a Center of Influence medallion “to thank you for supporting our airmen and our Hometown Heroes Salute awards ceremony,” Fultz said.

The medallion’s case bears’ the words of former President George W. Bush: “We will not waver, we will not tire, we will not falter and we will not fail. Peace and freedom will prevail.”

Tribune-Star Reporter Dianne Frances D. Powell can be reached at 812-231-4299 or

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Latest News Poll
AP Video
Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India Bon Jovi Helps Open Low-income Housing in Philly S.C. Man Apologizes for Naked Walk in Wal-Mart 'Piles' of Bodies in South Sudan Slaughter Raw: Man Fatally Shot During Police Standoff Hagel Gets Preview of New High-tech Projects Pipeline Opponents Protest on National Mall New Yorkers Celebrate Cherry Blossom Blooms Chief Mate: Crew Told to Escape After Passengers Stowaway Teen Forces Review of Airport Security 'Miss Meadows' Takes Holmes Back to Her Roots Raw: Royal Couple Tours Uluru in Australia New Country Music Hall of Fame Inductees Named Raw: Tesla Delivers First China Cars SCOTUS Hears Tv-over-Internet Case Obama to Oso: We'll Be Here As Long As It Takes Raw: MN Lakes Still Frozen Before Fishing Opener Hong Kong Residents Help Create Green Roofs Raw: Anti-Obama Activists Fight Manila Police Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye'
NDN Video
Stephen Colbert Tells David Letterman His Plan for 'Late Show' Georgetown police officer filmed tripping students Viral: It's Not Pitbull - It's Amy Poehler! Recycling Highlights for Earth Day Peeps Launched into Outer Space NYPD's Twitter Request For Photos Backfires New HBO Go Commercials Capture Awkward Family TV Watching Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India Rise of the Milkbots Jenna Dewan-Tatum Strips Down TRENDING: Brian Williams Raps 'Gin and Juice' on ‘Tonight Show’ Middle School heroes rescue students from burning bus WHOPPER OF FISHING STORY: Florida man catches massive Mako shark Maks Chmerkovskiy's "DWTS" Meltdown The many faces of Mike Woodson Ape Builds A Fire And Toasts Marshmallows In Amazing BBC Video Manchester Utd sack manager David Moyes "RHOA's" Dramatic Brawl High school, College Drug Ring Busted In Montgomery County High Court to Hear Dispute of TV Over Internet

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -


    March 12, 2010

Real Estate News