by Capt. George Tobias
Pacific Air Forces Public Affairs
3/18/2015 - KORAT ROYAL THAI AIR FORCE BASE, Thailand -- Their
eyes gleam with excitement and anticipation as Airmen delivered
clothing, toys and school supplies to the children of the Welfare Foster
Home March 18 in Udon Thani, Thailand.
The Airmen, who are here supporting Exercise Cope Tiger 15, and their
spouses collected items from their home units to bring with them to
"One of the coolest things we did during this exercise wasn't tactical
at all, it was community relations," said Lt. Col. Trey Coleman, 961st
Airborne Air Control Squadron commander. "The spouses back at Kadena
[Air Base, Japan] did a great job. They organized a donation drive and
collected 15 to 20 bags and boxes of cloths, toys, gifts and kids'
Those goods, which were loaded on a KC-135 on its way for a resupply
mission from Kadena AB to Thailand to perform air-to-air refueling
operations during the exercise, where delivered to the Airmen working at
Korat Royal Thai Air Force Base.
During the visit to the foster home Airmen from the U.S Air Force and
the Royal Thai air force delivered the donated items form the USAF, RTAF
and the Republic of Singapore air force.
Presenting the donations on behalf of the American Airmen, U.S. Air
Force Exercise Director Col. Paul Johnson said, "It's very special for
me to be here."
Speaking for the children and the staff of the foster home, Sootoo
Sonsawan, the home's director, thanked the three air forces for their
After the presentation, some of the older children performed a Thai
dance while wearing traditional costume , sharing with the Airmen a
little Thai culture.
The Airmen then served the children lunch and spent a little time
chatting with them. Before departing, Johnson said to the children that
he had "been flying airplanes for 22 years, but being here today is more
important to me than those 22 years of flying."
The Airmen are in Thailand taking part in the annual Exercise CT15,
which focused on multinational interoperability and regional
partnerships and is aimed at increasing readiness, cooperation and
interoperability among security forces, contributing to maritime
security, counterterrorism, search and rescue and humanitarian disaster
relief efforts in the Asia-Pacific region.