Scott Air Force Base colonel relieved of command

Col. John Howard, 375th Air Mobility Wing and Scott Air Force Base installation commander, speaks to members of the 375th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron following the AES mobilization to support the Hurricane Harvey relief and response efforts, Scott Air Force Base, Ill., Aug. 30, 2017.


By KELSEY LANDIS | Belleville News-Democrat | Published: December 12, 2017

BELLEVILLE, Ill. (Tribune News Service) — A Scott Air Force Base colonel has been replaced after the Air Force commander lost confidence in him, according to a news release.

Col. John Howard took the job as commander of the 375th Air Mobility Wing in July but was replaced Monday by Col. W. Chris Buschur.

“(Air Force Commander Lt. Gen. Giovanni) Tuck lost confidence in Howard’s leadership and ability to continue serving in command,” according to a news release. “This was an incredibly difficult decision to make, but ultimately one that best serves the 375th AMW and 18th AF.”

Howard said he was asked not to comment “on this” when reached by phone Monday evening. A written statement from the base did not specify a reason for why Tuck lost confidence in Howard.

Howard was scheduled to speak at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville’s fall commencement Dec. 16, but university officials were notified Monday afternoon that the base will send another colonel in his place, according to university spokesman Doug McIlhagga. Col. Marc Packler, commander of the 375th Communications Group, will speak at the commencement instead, McIlhagga said.

Howard served as the vice commander for the 100th Air Refueling Wing in Mildenhall, England, prior to his position at Scott Air Force Base.

Buschur served as vice commander for the 375th Air Mobility Wing until Howard’s ousting. Before his assignment at Scott Air Force Base, Buschur served as deputy commander of NATO Multinational Force at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan.

Col. Laura Lenderman preceded Howard as commander of the 375th Air Mobility Wing.

The wing provides aeromedical evacuation and support for transporting passengers and cargo. The wing commander leads more than 3,100 personnel, oversees more than $4 billion in assets and controls a $130 million annual budget.

©2017 the Belleville News-Democrat (Belleville, Ill.)
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