Air Force relieves 2 commanders and 4 subordinates at Minot Air Force Base
No specific reasons for the firings were provided.
Two commanders and four subordinate leaders at Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, have been relieved of command, according to a terse news release from 8th Air Force.
Maj. Gen. Andrew Gebara, commander of 8th Air Force, relieved Col. Gregory C. Mayer, commander of the 5th Mission Support Group, and Maj. Jonathan Welch, commander of the 5th Logistics Readiness Squadron on Monday, according to an Air Force Global Strike Command spokesperson.
The command, which oversees the Air Force’s nuclear bombers and missiles, is not releasing the names of the four subordinate leaders, who were relieved by other commanders assigned to Minot, the spokesperson said.
“To protect the privacy of the individuals, further details will not be released,” the news release says.
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Mayer, Welch, and the four subordinate leaders were relieved of command “due to a loss of confidence in their ability to complete their assigned duties,” Air Force officials said.
The 5th Bomb Wing, which falls under the 8th Air Force, is based at Minot. The wing flies the B-52H Stratofortress, which is one of the two types of nuclear-capable bombers that the Air Force uses.
No information was available about why Gebara and the other commanders lost confidence in the six individuals.
“These personnel actions were necessary to maintain the very high standards we demand of those units entrusted with supporting our Nation’s nuclear mission,” Gebara said in the news release about his decision to relieve Mayer and Welch.
Ten years ago, Minot became ground zero for the Air Force’s problems with the nuclear enterprise when missile crews performed poorly during a March 2013 inspection and Lt. Col. Jay Folds, deputy commander of the 91st Operations Group, sent an internal email warning of “rot” within the missileer crew force at Minot, according to the Associated Press.
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