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Anchorage thanks service members

By Airman 1st Class Javier Alvarez | JBER Public Affairs | June 14, 2017

JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska -- More than 470 service members, retirees and business leaders from across the Anchorage area participated in a military appreciation luncheon hosted by the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce in downtown Anchorage, June 12.

“The military base and the personnel are such an important part of our community,” said Bruce Bustamante, Anchorage Chamber of Commerce president. “And what we see in a lot of cases is once people in the military finish their tour of duty, they’ll return to Anchorage and live and contribute to the community.”

This was the 24th annual luncheon, which is held in conjunction with military appreciation week activities and serves as a way for the community to show support for Alaska service members.

“There can be no doubt that America’s service members have given much to guarantee the freedom of this great nation,” said Air Force Lt. Gen. Kenneth Wilsbach, commander of the North American Aerospace Defense Command, Alaskan NORAD Region, U.S. Northern Command, Alaskan Command, and 11th Air Force. “Our nation owes a debt of gratitude to all those who have served and especially to those who made the ultimate sacrifice and to the families they left behind.”

The event was hosted in conjunction with military appreciation week activities, which include the military appreciation picnic near the Buckner Physical Fitness Center June 16, and the annual military appreciation baseball game hosted by the Anchorage Bucs at Mulcahy Stadium in Anchorage.

“I think the community has a very strong relationship with the military,” Bustamante said. “My father served in the Army in World War II, and I feel very good about what our organization does to support people who dedicate their lives.”

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