Making a Difference

SSgt. Don Elias, a member of the 88th Security Forces Squadron at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio, is one of the thousands of Air Force members who has taken on roles in support of the Global War on Terror that have traditionally been carried out by soldiers. Deployed now to Qalat, Afghanistan, as part of the Zabul provincial reconstruction team, he volunteered for his current duty as a convoy driver and security team member for the PRT. “I wanted to go to Afghanistan to help make a difference in people’s lives,” said Elias, who’s official title is NCO-in-charge of force protection. In this role, he is also responsible for training and managing the flight of Afghan Security Guards that provides security for the PRT’s compound. Elias said he feels like he’s making a difference and his work “beyond the flightline” is an experience like no other. “I know that there is a lot of negative media about the war in Afghanistan, but I am faithful to the cause,” he said, adding, “It gives me great pleasure to have supported this mission.” (Qalat report by SSgt. Tammie Moore)