Keeping up base appearance instills pride in Sabers

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Natasha Stannard
  • 52nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs
Spangdahlem Air Base's Eifel Pride and the 52nd Civil Engineer Squadron's ground maintenance crew ensure the base stays clean throughout the year by picking up debris and taking care of the base's greenery.

Both agencies work together to keep up appearances on and around base for visitors, base members and the local community.

Eifel pride is a program first term Airmen go through to make the most of their time by beautifying the base as they await appointments and in-processing. The new Airmen also learn the layout of the base and gain the opportunity to meet people from different squadrons as they walk the base to pick-up debris.

The ground maintenance crew beautifies the base by mowing grass, watering flowers and greenery, and disposing of dead flowers and bushes.

"It's the same with your home; you take care of that too, you make it nice - that's what we do here, " said Guenter Pallien, 52nd CES grounds maintenance foreman. "We don't let the grass grow too high, and (we) pick up dead bushes or dead flowers around the base."

Maintaining the base is not only important for appearances, but for safety and security as well.

"If we didn't pick up the debris, the wind blowing could blow debris onto the flightline which would be a potential disaster," said Tech. Sgt. Gerald Bontrager, 52nd Fighter Wing Eifel Pride NCO in charge.

Keeping the grass cut also ensures that pilots can see lights, security forces members can see past the gates and ensures tall grass fires are not started, added Pallien.

Both teams also clean around the base to show the host nation that the base takes pride in the land.

"It's important to keep up the base appearance because it shows our integrity, our core values and how much pride we take in our base," said Airman 1st Class David Kelly, Eifel Pride volunteer. "It also shows the community and people who come to visit that we have a high level of standards."

Bontrager said he hopes all Airmen take pride in the base. It is the first term Airmen's job to pick up trash from storms and wind; it is everyone's job to clean up after themselves and dispose of trash they see on the grounds here.