MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan — Members of the 35th Fighter Wing are exhaling a collective sigh of relief after hearing Tuesday that the wing earned an “excellent” rating in last week’s Operational Readiness Inspection.

Wing and base commander, Col. Terrence J. O’Shaughnessy, has declared Friday a wing down-day. “The intent there is to give everyone time off for a job well done and also to give time for families to get back together,” said Col. Joel Malone, wing vice commander.

Some airmen in mission-essential services, such as the fire department and medical group, will have to work Friday, Malone added, with time off at a later date.

The down day will likely be a much needed break. The six-day ORI—- a grueling evalution that tests a wing’s combat readiness about every three years — had airmen working 12-hour or more shifts, until the inspection concluded Saturday night.

Pacific Air Forces inspectors delivered the results Tuesday during a mass briefing. “The grade was an ‘excellent’ overall, so we were very proud of the grade,” Malone said, “and it was certainly well-deserved. We are excited for the entire Misawa community and we appreciate everyone’s help, assistance and understanding as we went about our exercise schedule and training in order to prepare.” Misawa’s grade was based on the Air Force’s standard five-tier evaluation system, which delivers marks for outstanding, excellent, satisfactory, marginal and unsatisfactory efforts.

Top performersThe following Misawa airmen were given coins from the Pacific Air Forces inspector general for exceptional individual performances during the Operational Readiness Inspection:

Maj. Cameron Caroom — 35th Operations Support SquadronMaj. Anne Marie McCain — 35th Medical Support Squadron1st Lt. Christina Sheets — 13th Fighter SquadronSenior Master Sgt. Thomas Mical — 35th Aircraft Maintenance SquadronMaster Sgt. Phillip French — 35th Communications SquadronMaster Sgt. Richard Robinson — 35th Maintenance SquadronTech. Sgt. Don Hoobler — 35th Fighter Wing Command PostStaff Sgt. Theresa Newell — 35th Fighter Wing Chapel StaffSgt. Charice Roberson — 35th Logistics Readiness SquadronSenior Airman Sergio Rangel — 13th Fighter SquadronThe PACAF inspector general singled out the following as “Outstanding Teams” during the ORI:

35th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron Unit Control Center Team13th Aircraft Maintenance Unit Generation Team35th Maintenance Squadron Quality Assurance Team35th Maintenance Squadron Crash Recovery Team35th Fighter Wing Public Affairs Team35th Communications Squadron Quick Fix Team35th Logistics Readiness Squadron Fuels Support Team35th Operations Support Combat Intelligence Cell Day Shift Team35th Fighter Wing Threat Working Group Team35th Operations Support Squadron Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape Operations Team35th Operations Support Squadron Airfield Management and Weather Night Shift Post Attack Reconnaissance Team— Jennifer H. Svan

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Jennifer reports on the U.S. military from Kaiserslautern, Germany, where she writes about the Air Force, Army and DODEA schools. She’s had previous assignments for Stars and Stripes in Japan, reporting from Yokota and Misawa air bases. Before Stripes, she worked for daily newspapers in Wyoming and Colorado. She’s a graduate of the College of William and Mary in Virginia.

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