March Airmen Earn Legendary Wings on Fliers Wall

  • Published
  • By Ms. Ashley Van Dien
  • 452 AMW Public Affairs

March Air Reserve Base earned their wings on the Famous Fliers Wall at the historic Mission Inn in Riverside, Calif., March 26, 2019. The city of Riverside celebrated a century of proud military support in a ceremony with March ARB commanders, civic leaders, and citizens of the community.

“The City of Riverside has touched many of our Airman's lives. The history is there on the wall,” said keynote speaker Gen. Maryanne Miller, commander, Air Mobility Command. “Today I am proud to stand here and say thank you. Thank you City of Riverside for all your support over the years. Thank you for everything you’ve provided for our Airmen and our families, in times of war and in times of peace.”

The bronze wings memorialize military members who served at March Field throughout its illustrious past. From the Alessandro Flying Training Field, through the first Great War, after Pearl Harbor, into Korea and Vietnam, the wings honor the Airmen that guard our liberty yesterday and today. The reserve Citizen Airmen that protect our freedom and work alongside us in our community. The Airmen that deploy and support defense and humanitarian operations all around the world. The men and women serving as active duty Airmen, Air National Guardsmen, Air Force Reservists and civilians.

“These are the unsung heroes that we recognize today,” said Gen. Miller. “These wings represent an absolutely incredible piece of Riverside’s history. A history rich with legends of the air, represented on this wall, and ever present in the minds of the citizens of Riverside.”

The history of March Field is inextricably linked to Riverside, woven into the fabric of the city. The Mission Inn Hotel is a national historic landmark that opened the same year manned aviation took flight. Mission Inn owner and long-time resident Frank Miller worked with Riverside city leaders and the government to build a U.S. Army airfield on the Alessandro Plains. March Field opened in March 1918.

“Even in the early years, this community and the Mission Inn stepped in to walk alongside this fledgling Air Force base and help it rise out of the dirt,” Gen. Miller shared. “In fact, March Field’s very first commander, Capt. William Carruthers, set up his initial operation in the hotel as they were building March. For many years, March provided the U.S. military with brave Airmen, laying down the foundation for the Air Force that we know and love today.”

March Field became home to many of the world’s greatest aviators. Air Force legends Gen. Hap Arnold, Gen. Hoyt Vandenberg, and Gen. Curtis LeMay, are honored with their own sets of wings on the fliers wall. Now the dedicated Airmen of March Air Reserve Base proudly fly alongside them, Wingmen and future legends.