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Enlisted aircrew not saluting?

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Is it ok for enlisted aircrew like loads, booms, etc.. to not salute an officer when outside? Seen this consistently among the TSgts, senior instructors, also one of those dudes put pilot wings on his name patch and wore them?
 
 
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5 minutes ago, KPPV1 said:


Is it ok for enlisted aircrew like loads, booms, etc.. to not salute an officer when outside? Seen this consistently among the TSgts, senior instructors, also one of those dudes put pilot wings on his name patch and wore them?
 
 
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I've known some crews that fly pretty often together, don't salute each other because they're friends. As for the wings, loadmasters and some other afsc's have very similar looking wings. 99.9% of the time they're not pilot wings upon closer inspection.

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Is it ok for enlisted aircrew like loads, booms, etc.. to not salute an officer when outside? Seen this consistently among the TSgts, senior instructors, also one of those dudes put pilot wings on his name patch and wore them?
 
 
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Is it ok - technically no. You'll find that there's more camaraderie between the Os and Es on multi-crew aircraft that leads to conditions where military decorum is less formal. If it's objectively bad or it's really an issue for you, I'd suggest talking to one of the senior Es or 1st Sgt about it. You can also reach out to your Flt/CC or ADO if prefer to stay on the officer side.

Present real evidence that highlights a broader issue rather solely calling out someone. You'd rather not come off as the FNG that is mad about not getting saluted by everyone he outranks. If it's that the squadron treats common outdoor areas as unofficial no salute zones, then hopefully that solves your problem, otherwise it could bring up good discussions about professionalism within your squadron.

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When I left E-3's and before that VC-137's and started crewing KC-135A's the pilot insisted I tone down my formality and use first names. My first 135 TDY was to Volk Field  and while I was getting the jet to bed I was shocked by the crew waiting for me with a cold beer, the AC was also the SQDO. On other airframes I have been left stranded by the crews. After my base closed they sent me back to Tinker and E-3's , one trip I had lav hose break and shower me in shit, the AC wanted me to fly 12 hours in my nasty uniform and not shower, so not to delay,  the only time the whole crew intervened and let me go shower and and put on fresh uniform. I missed the 135 that day for sure and the crews that treated you like aircrew and not a duty pax.

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Putting pilot wings on? Not sure about that. Most enlisted crewmembers take pride in their enlisted crew position and probably wouldn't want to "impersonate" a pilot. Sure there's more to the story on that one.

As far as enlisted crew members not saluting Pilots, in a lot of crew airplanes where officers and enlisted crew members work together, go TDY together, live together in some cases, for days or months on end, you get pretty close and the relationship gets less formal. Is it right? By military professional standards, probably not, but when I trust that enlisted member with my life during certain phases of the mission, as long as everyone on the crew understands their roles and responsibilities while executing that mission, I don't mind it.

I have, however, experienced some enlisted crew members abusing that "privilege" and allowed it to degrade the mission, which is where it crosses the line and needs to be address. It is a fine art to turn the professionalism and formalities on and off. Some people can do it and some don't know when to tighten it up.

It can also cause some anomosity amongst the non-flying enlisted core because they see how well enlisted flyers are treated by the officers. Again, you need to have the SA to know when to turn it on and off.

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2 hours ago, KPPV1 said:


Is it ok for enlisted aircrew like loads, booms, etc.. to not salute an officer when outside? Seen this consistently among the TSgts, senior instructors, also one of those dudes put pilot wings on his name patch and wore them?
 
 
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If we run into each other walking out of the bx, ya, you salute, it’s the rules and you are in public for everyone to see. Dude runs to grab something out of his car after we brief up and we meet him in the squadron parking lot to step, no I don’t expect a salute. 
 

The rules say one thing, on the other hand our job is to be a crew to accomplish the mission and all come home alive, I am not going to bust someone’s balls over a salute, especially after working/living/eating/ etc together for weeks or months on end. 

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Corollary:

When I was an O-1/2 I never would have called an O-4/5 by first name for any reason while in uniform. 

That is no longer the standard among young pilots I’ve noticed.  I’d never correct anyone on it, but I do think that it potentially can be an issue when it comes time to dole out discipline for whatever reason.  Good thing I’m not a commander so it’s never really an issue.

I rarely would use first names with my fellow NCO aircrew either.  I always figured they earned their title of Staff/Tech/Master Sergeant. But if they preferred a first name I wouldn’t have a problem with it.

Default to the military courtesy till you know you can alter it.

As with all things, a little SA goes a long way.

 

 

 

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I've known some crews that fly pretty often together, don't salute each other because they're friends. As for the wings, loadmasters and some other afsc's have very similar looking wings. 99.9% of the time they're not pilot wings upon closer inspection.

Wish that were true... but he had pilot wings.. and also consistently tells the pilots how to fly the jet..


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Wish that were true... but he had pilot wings.. and also consistently tells the pilots how to fly the jet..


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I’m very informal, but:

If he’s not a pilot and wearing pilot wings, I’d rip them off his suit and tell him to report to the DO and chew his ass.

And if I saw a pilot let an aircrew tell them how to fly, I’d get the f-ck off that plane because no pilot worth a sh-t allows that to happen.


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Putting pilot wings on? Not sure about that. Most enlisted crewmembers take pride in their enlisted crew position and probably wouldn't want to "impersonate" a pilot. Sure there's more to the story on that one.

As far as enlisted crew members not saluting Pilots, in a lot of crew airplanes where officers and enlisted crew members work together, go TDY together, live together in some cases, for days or months on end, you get pretty close and the relationship gets less formal. Is it right? By military professional standards, probably not, but when I trust that enlisted member with my life during certain phases of the mission, as long as everyone on the crew understands their roles and responsibilities while executing that mission, I don't mind it.

I have, however, experienced some enlisted crew members abusing that "privilege" and allowed it to degrade the mission, which is where it crosses the line and needs to be address. It is a fine art to turn the professionalism and formalities on and off. Some people can do it and some don't know when to tighten it up.

It can also cause some anomosity amongst the non-flying enlisted core because they see how well enlisted flyers are treated by the officers. Again, you need to have the SA to know when to turn it on and off.



He has pilot wings on and sees himself as a pilot, even tries to instruct pilots on how to fly. And this is an enlisted instructor crew member not a new airmen..


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1 hour ago, KPPV1 said:

He has pilot wings on and sees himself as a pilot, even tries to instruct pilots on how to fly. And this is an enlisted instructor crew member not a new airmen..


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What clown show are you from where dudes don't correct dudes who get too big for their britches...regardless of rank?  Someone needs a ticket for improper lane usage.

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Not the bro opinion here but when working with enlisted aviators, you don’t have to be their friend. You have to be their leader. That doesn’t mean being an asshole because you outrank them, but if you know your shit, empower them and ensure they know their shit, they’ll respect you and get along a lot better than if you’re some clown that’s everyone’s friend but can’t fly worth a crap.

On the topic of saluting, I don’t understand the problem with it. It’s a show of mutual respect between military members (hence the return of the action). It’s not some hazing thing.

Lastly on how to address these issues, just address it directly and handle it. Don’t go tattling to dad if you can’t deal with someone that’s not meeting the standards of a military member. Believe it or not the Air Force is a military branch and not some jobs program.

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2 hours ago, KPPV1 said:

 

 


He has pilot wings on and sees himself as a pilot, even tries to instruct pilots on how to fly. And this is an enlisted instructor crew member not a new airmen..


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Just curious how he earned pilot wings? Like PTN?

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1 hour ago, drewpey said:

What clown show are you from where dudes don't correct dudes who get too big for their britches...regardless of rank?  Someone needs a ticket for improper lane usage.

Agreed- I have flown with outstanding enlisted guys with Commercial/ATP backgrounds and never did they feel the need (or want) to wear Pilot wings or “instruct” my students on how to fly. To the op, I would bring this up on your EOC critique if this is an enlisted FTU instructor or talk to your Chief Pilot about it if you don’t feel like you can approach the member directly.  Sharing his experience in and out of the Air Force is fine for debrief but this guy sounds like a possible CRM nightmare for an inexperienced/young AC. 

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4 hours ago, Homestar said:

Just curious how he earned pilot wings? Like PTN?

We've got a TSgt personnelist in my squadron with pilot wings. She was a C-12 pilot in the early 2000s, resigned her commission to raise a family, and then reenlisted. Of note, she says she works harder as a TSgt than she ever did as a Major (I can vouch for her work effort now). When she hits her 20 good years she'll retire as a Major... 

It's the ANG so YMMV. 

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I would salute when there was a good possibility of snipers in the area.

 

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8 hours ago, KPPV1 said:

 

 


He has pilot wings on and sees himself as a pilot, even tries to instruct pilots on how to fly. And this is an enlisted instructor crew member not a new airmen..


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WTF?

There is either a backstory or this needs to be squashed YESTERDAY.  

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Just ask him man. "Hey I noticed you have pilot wings, that is unusual for enlisted aviators. Is there a story behind that?" 

Either a.) He is the 0.1% that is authorized to wear them and maybe does have a good story. Or b.) He's going to get embarrassed very quickly and have a hard time holding his game. 

 

If its option B, simply council him. It's not appropriate to wear badges you haven't earned. But a simple question when something doesn't seem right will go a long way. And that's a skill you can take to flying. As a new CP, noone is going to shut you down for being inquisitive, when your observations may identify a potential problem. 

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We've got a TSgt personnelist in my squadron with pilot wings. She was a C-12 pilot in the early 2000s, resigned her commission to raise a family, and then reenlisted. Of note, she says she works harder as a TSgt than she ever did as a Major (I can vouch for her work effort now). When she hits her 20 good years she'll retire as a Major... 
It's the ANG so YMMV. 



We had a guy retire a few years ago who was enlisted in the unit then got picked up to go to UPT and commissioned without a degree. The deal was that he was supposed to finish it at some point. He ran into some sort of roadblock at UPT and didn’t finish, so he came back and filled some non-rated officer billets back at the wing. He made it all the way to Major before they said “hey, wait a minute...you don’t have your degree!” and he returned to the rank of SSgt, which is what he was before he commissioned.

At his retirement, he took off his service dress jacket that had Master Sergeant rank to reveal his Major oak leaves on his shirt as he was retiring as an O-4

We also had a guy who was an A-6 pilot in the late 80s/early 90s. He got out of the navy and went to Delta. After 9/11 he tried to get back in as an O, ran into issues so he joined us as a crew chief. He wore naval aviator wings above his MX badge on his ABUs.

I also know a guy who was a Warrant Officer -60 pilot in the Army, got out and went to the ARC as a C-130/C-5 Flight Engineer. He wore his Army pilot wings above his enlisted aircrew wings.

So yeah, like they said, YMMV and it doesn’t hurt to say “hey, what’s your story” because that story may be interesting.

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15 hours ago, hindsight2020 said:

Must be. The airman currently stationed at DLF is a PTN graduate and a current T-6 MSI instructor pending his completion of a degree in order to qualify to attend OTS, then become assignable to an 11(X) billet.

Yeah, but he's still not wearing pilot wings...

"He finished training at the 24th Detachment at Randolph AFB. He was awarded his wings, yet they remain in a glass case inscribed, “BREAK GLASS UPON OTS GRADUATION.” "
"
200831-F-JI530-041.JPG

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