Cannon just like home

27th Fighter Wing Commander Col. John Posner carves turkey to be served during Cannon Air Force Base’s Thanksgiving dinner Thursday on base. (Staff photo: Eric Kluth)

By Tova Fruchtman: CNJ staff writer

CANNON AIR FORCE BASE — Joshua Webster, 20, has been stationed at Cannon Air Force Base for a little over two years. Thursday was his second Thanksgiving away from home, but he had a taste of home at Cannon’s dining hall.

Airman 1st class Webster, who’s from Huntsville, Ala., was among an estimated 350 served a traditional Thanksgiving meal — compliments of his supervisors.

Master sergeants, senior master sergeants and even base commander Col. John Posner carved turkey, scooped up mashed potatoes and served green beans to airmen and their families.

“(They’re) taking time off from (their) Thanksgiving to come serve the airmen,” Webster said. “It’s really family oriented here.”

Dressed in camaflouge and a chef’s hat with an apron, Posner manned a turkey carving station.

He said he thinks it’s important to be there for the young airmen who can’t go home, and to make them feel like part of a family.

Webster said Posner & Co. accomplished their goal.
“The people here are always trying to invite you to their houses for Thanksgiving,” Webster said. He planned to accept such an offer later on Thursday.

Cannon officials even decorated for the event. The dining hall featured paper turkeys and pumpkins, a table cloth and even ice sculptures filled with fresh fruit.

Mary Hamilton came all the way from San Antonio for the festivities. Hamilton said her husband is in the Army and was deployed to Iraq in October. Rather than spend the holiday alone, she brought her four children to Cannon for the weekend to spend time with her sister, whose husband is in the Air Force and deployed to Korea.

“Since our husbands are gone, it’s just really us eating, so it’s nice to have a Thanksgiving dinner,” Hamilton said.
“It’s made it much easier.”

Webster said military life can be lonely, but he reflected on why he’s thankful: his family and his time in the Air Force.

“I’m here. I’m in the Air Force. I’m not at home going nowhere like half my friends are,” he said.