It’s all about pride
Concerning flight suits, where do I start? I have more than 20 years working on and flying in Black Hawk helicopters. The one-piece Nomex flight suit was, to me, what the airborne wings are to an airborne soldier. It was what distinguished me as "not the exact same" as the next guy. I’m not talking about my personal life, or dating (married, 20 years), or my moral/ethical qualities, or my work ethic. I’m talking about pride in my job. Pride in being not just a soldier, but something more: an aviator.
When I walked into a dining facility in a flight suit, people knew I was involved in aviation, one way or another. Now when I walk into a DFAC, I’m just another head in the endless sea of cattle heading to the trough. If you haven’t noticed lately, with the Army Combat Uniform, we can no longer wear any badges above the "U.S. Army." That includes airborne, air assault, Combat Infantryman Badge, aviation, all of them. Thus, in essence, the passing of the one-piece flight suit signaled the end of having anything other than our names or a shoulder tab that distinguished us from one another on our uniforms.
For those who complained about "Flight suit was best for wings" (letter, Oct. 6), please reread it and understand what it says. The writer was not saying that every recipient of the CAB was not deserving. Not once did he demean anyone who had been wounded or otherwise.
Staff Sgt. Clinton H. DavisJoint Base Balad, Iraq