by Tech. Sgt. Andrew Merlock
177th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
12/8/2015 - ATLANTIC CITY AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, N.J. -- The
Legion of Merit was awarded to the outgoing 177th Mission Support Group
(MSG) commander during a change of command ceremony here, Dec. 5.
Col. Michael Love was presented with the award culminating the end of his illustrious 25-year career.
"I am deeply humbled and honored to receive this recognition," said
Love. "You could almost change it to the Merit of Legions. It's obvious
that it is not the result of a solo performance."
The Legion of Merit is a military award of the United States armed
forces that is given for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the
performance of outstanding services and achievements.
"All those magnificent accomplishments that were attributed to me really
would not have been possible had it not been for the hard work and
dedication of the talented men and women of the mission support group,"
Love, who initially enlisted with the 177th Fighter Wing in 1991, was
commissioned as a second lieutenant in 1992. Love served as both flight
and squadron commanders prior to his appointment as MSG commander in
Col. Patrick Kennedy, vice commander of the 177th FW, presented Love
with the award in addition to his certificate of retirement signed by
President Barack Obama.
"Mike is one of those commanders who is level headed, is unflappable in
times of crisis," explained Kennedy. "He always had that calming
presence. I consider him a friend, a trusted commander, and just a great
all around officer to be associated with."