Fairchild Air Force Base renames schoolhouse in honor of fallen Bakersfield native

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FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. (KGET) — The Fairchild Air Force Base in Washington is honoring a Bakersfield native and service member who lost his life while deployed in Kyrgyzstan.

Last week, the base renamed their Airman Leadership School after Tech Sgt. Herman ‘Tre’ Mackey III. The institution will now be known as Sgt. Herman Mackey Airman Leadership School. 

“Most of you know Sgt. Mackey, and it’s no surprise to those of us that knew him that there is such
overwhelming support and desire to enshrine his incredible legacy,” said Chief Master Sgt. Chris
Rueckert, 92nd Operations Group superintendent.

Mackey was killed in May 2013 when his KC-135 Stratotanker went down in the Kyrgyz Republic. He was assigned to the 93rd Air Refueling Squadron with Capt. Mark ‘Tyler’ Voss and Capt. Victoria Pinckney. All three lost their lives in the aircraft crash. 

Those closest to Mackey described him as a leader by action and someone who put others first.

“When it comes to honorable examples, I really can’t think of another person that displays this, through
the actions of just what the history has written about him,” said Rebekah Horton, 92nd ARW historian.
“By dedicating this building to him, everyone who comes through ALS after this will be able to look at
his name and research what happened to him, read the stories and personal accounts about him and
the type of person he was, and hopefully develop their leadership style in a similar way to his, because
it was evident that he was the type of leader the Air Force needed.”

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