by Staff Sgt. Rachelle Blake
55th Wing Public Affairs
6/26/2015 - OFFUTT AIR FORCE BASE, Neb. -- In
the spring of 1995, Offutt saw the completion of its state of the art
Military Strategic and Tactical Relay facility, commonly referred to as
This was the world's first operational Air Force Command Post Terminal
and was responsible for reliable, secure, survivable, jam resistant
satellite communications and Integrated Tactical Warning/Attack
Assessment data to the President, Secretary of Defense, Chairman of the
Joint Chiefs of Staff, U.S. Strategic Command, North American Aerospace
Defense Command, U.S. Northern Command, Air Force Space Command and the
As a symbol of this momentous occasion, members of the original unit
filled a time capsule and placed it in one of the walls, vowing to keep
it sealed for twenty years.
In a recent ceremony, the contents of the capsule were revealed. Present
at the event, were four of the original team members: U.S. Air Force
Lt. Col. Ret. Daniel Clatanoff, Chief Master Sgt. Ret. Bernard Lichvar,
Master Sgt. Ret. Thomas Reese and Craig Williams.
"The time capsule was my idea, but the credit for all the hard work goes
to these gentlemen," said Clatanoff, who was the squadron commander
when MILSTAR was first opened. "We worked hard on getting this facility
operational. My hat is off to these three here and the 20 troops who
brought it all together. I am very proud of them."
Among the contents of the box were a piece of the ribbon from the ribbon
cutting, a MILSTAR training certificate, local newspaper, POW/MIA
bracelet, uniform name tapes, fiber optics, chief stripes and several
Also in attendance of the event were current squadron, group and wing leadership.
"This MILSTAR facility plays an important role in the defense of our
nation and it's really neat to see the lineage between its former and
current members," said Col. Mark Williamson, 55th Wing vice commander.
To this day, the MILSTAR mission is still as vital as ever. It is a
cross-linking and cross-banding survivable satellite communication
system linking nuclear forces with the President of The United States,
and other heads of state.
Cross-linking refers to the MILSTAR satellites' ability to transmit and
receive information directly with one another without the need for a
ground-relay station. It is the first Defense Department constellation
capable of cross-linking.
Cross-Banding refers to the satellites' capability of using several different frequency bands simultaneously and seamlessly.