Airmen trade blue stripes for gold bars, silver wings

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Quay Drawdy
  • Air University Public Affairs

Few things tell an Airman it’s time for a fresh uniform quite like swapping enlisted stripes for second lieutenant’s rank. For a pair of former airmen first class, now second lieutenants, their gold bars come with silver pilots’ wings.

Officer Training School graduates, 2nd Lts. Micah Daniel and Kristen Savage, received their commissions Dec. 19, 2019, and were former enlisted student pilots who participated in Air Education and Training Command’s Pilot Training Next version 2 program. 

Both lieutenants actually earned their pilot wings first, upon completion of Pilot Training Next, but had to wait to complete OTS to wear the wings.

“Newly commissioned Lieutenants Daniel and Savage are making history today and I am extremely proud and honored to be here and to be a part of the ‘winging’ tradition for them,” said Lt. Col. Ryan Riley, Detachment 24 commander. “They were top-notch students during Pilot Training Next and it’s great to see them get wings pinned on.  Both lieutenants possess qualities that the Air Force needs and I look forward to watching them grow and succeed as Air Force officers and pilots.”

Since they earned their wings before commissioning, they are making Air Force history.

“It doesn’t feel like making history when you’re doing it,” said Savage. “It feels hard and when it’s over you can look back at what you did and everyone who helped you and see you were all part of change.”

Having finished their training to become officers, both Daniel and Savage will be making their way to their respective training units with a pair of wings having landed on their uniforms.

“I don’t know what waits for me, but I know it will be fun,” said Daniel.