Ihlenfeld assumes command of 336th Air Refueling Squadron

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Kevin Mitterholzer
  • 452 AMW Public Affairs

Lt. Col. Matthew J. Ihlenfeld assumed command of the 336th Air Refueling Squadron during an assumption of command ceremony, here at March Air Reserve Base, February 24.

Col. Melissa A. Coburn, 452nd Operations Group commander, presided over the assumption of command ceremony.

Coburn recalls the uniqueness of the squadron and the unit mission that involves various components. "I looked up some information, " said Coburn. "The 336th ARS is the largest Air Force Reserve KC-135R flying squadron with 13 aircraft."

The ceremony involved Coburn's passing of the squadron's guide-on to Ihlenfeld that signifies the formal invocation of responsibility, authority, and accountability to him. 

Ihlenfeld began his military career at the United States Air Force Academy, where he graduated in 2001. Ihlenfeld has extensive experience in flight operations, including flight instruction. Ihlenfeld holds the rating of Command Pilot, where he has completed more than 3,200 military flying hours. Ihlenfeld's flight hours include the operation of T-6, T-1, and KC-135R/T aircrafts.

As Ihlenfeld reflected on the future of his new command of the 336th ARS, he reminded the audience of the challenges faced while serving in the Air Force Reserve. "It's not easy to balance your civilian job, personal life and Reserve life," said Ihlenfeld. "I find myself asking 'why do we serve' and the answer is simple," said Ihlenfeld. "Patriotism and the fact that we want to take care of each other."

"I look forward to serving this squadron," said Ihlenfeld as he addressed the audience with a message of his vision looking forward. "I will do everything I can to support you and make your service a success."