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288th OSS welcomes new chief

Chief Master Sgt. Nathan E. Harrell, 288th Operations Support Squadron superintendent, addresses Airmen of the 188th Wing during his promotion ceremony at Ebbing Air National Guard Base, Fort Smith, Ark., Feb. 2, 2019. Harrell has over 36 years of military service, and has been a member of the 188th Wing since 1985. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Emmanuel Gutierrez)

Chief Master Sgt. Nathan E. Harrell, 288th Operations Support Squadron superintendent, addresses Airmen of the 188th Wing during his promotion ceremony at Ebbing Air National Guard Base, Fort Smith, Ark., Feb. 2, 2019. Harrell has over 36 years of military service, and has been a member of the 188th Wing since 1985. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Emmanuel Gutierrez)

Chief Master Sgt. Nathan E. Harrell, 288th Operations Support Squadron superintendent, has his stripes pinned on by family members during his promotion ceremony at Ebbing Air National Guard Base, Fort Smith, Ark., Feb. 2, 2019. Harrell has over 36 years of military service, and has been a member of the 188th Wing since 1985. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Emmanuel Gutierrez)

Chief Master Sgt. Nathan E. Harrell, 288th Operations Support Squadron superintendent, has his stripes pinned on by family members during his promotion ceremony at Ebbing Air National Guard Base, Fort Smith, Ark., Feb. 2, 2019. Harrell has over 36 years of military service, and has been a member of the 188th Wing since 1985. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Emmanuel Gutierrez)

Col. Robert I. Kinney, 188th Wing commander, congratulates Chief Master Sgt. Nathan E. Harrell, 288th Operations Support Squadron superintendent, after his promotion ceremony at Ebbing Air National Guard Base, Fort Smith, Ark., Feb. 2, 2019. Harrell has over 36 years of military service, and has been a member of the 188th Wing since 1985. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Emmanuel Gutierrez)

Col. Robert I. Kinney, 188th Wing commander, congratulates Chief Master Sgt. Nathan E. Harrell, 288th Operations Support Squadron superintendent, after his promotion ceremony at Ebbing Air National Guard Base, Fort Smith, Ark., Feb. 2, 2019. Harrell has over 36 years of military service, and has been a member of the 188th Wing since 1985. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Emmanuel Gutierrez)

EBBING AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Ark. -- The 288th Operations Support Squadron congratulated their new chief during a Feb. 2, 2019, promotion ceremony at the Red Horse Training Center, here.

Lt. Col. Gregory D. Johnson, Commander of the 288th, presided over the ceremony for Chief Master Sgt. Nathan E. Harrell, superintendent of the 288th Operations Support Squadron. Johnson spoke highly of Harrell and his accomplishments over his long military career.

“Chief is a title given to those that lead the way and you have gained so much wisdom in 36 and a half years,” said Johnson.

Harrell began his military career in 1982 enlisting in the United States Marine Corps. After three years Harrell left the Marine Corps and enlisted in the Arkansas Air National Guard with the 188th Fighter Wing in September 1985. Harrell's first job with the Wing was in aircraft maintenance and worked with the F-4, F-16, and A-10 fighter jets during his career.

During the ceremony, Harrell spoke highly of the men and women of the 188th Wing.

“The 188th is a great team,” he said. “We have always excelled at any task or hurdle encountered and any we will encounter.”

After 28 years in maintenance, Harrell volunteered to become a charter member for the newly-formed 153rd Intelligence Squadron. Harrell has continued to lead the charge in his new job, eventually moving into the superintendent role at the 288th.

“Chief is a title given to those who lead the way and you have gained so much wisdom in 36 and a half years,” Johnson said. “I have great respect for Chief Harrell’s dedication after almost 37 years of active service to this great nation. Your dedication to the Air Force and the Airmen of this wing is unquestionable.”

Harrell concluded his promotion ceremony by reflecting on his career and his wish for the Airmen under his charge.

“My wish is that everyone here could have the opportunity to be in my shoes, giving this promotion speech,” he said. “Less than one percent of Airmen ever make chief; I’ll try to get that changed.”