Air Force City, Clark Air Base, Pampanga
1 July 2013

President Benigno S. Aquino III was guest of honor and speaker during the 66th Founding Anniversary of the Philippine Air Force held at the Air Force City in Clark Air Base, Pampanga.

In his statement, President Aquino thanked Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin for his dedication and leadership to modernize the military while he cited the aircraft recovery initiative programs under PAF Commanding General Lauro Catalino Dela Cruz. The initiatives put back into commission several aircrafts like the N-22 Nomad transport aircrafts, UH-1H utility helicopter, LC-210 aircraft and MG-520 attack helicopter.

He also recognized the active ground and civic military operations the PAF has performed since 2012 despite limited resources.

“Dahil sa maayos at masinop na pangangasiwa ng inyong pondo, ayon sa DBM, pumapalo sa 99.6 % ang financial obligation efficiency ng Air Force. Bilib din po tayo sa 410th Maintenance Wing, na sa kauna-unahang pagkakataon ay magtagumpay na kinumpuni at pinagana ang isang C-130 transport aircraft. Congratulations po sa ISO Certification na iginawad sa inyo dahil dito,” he said.

The President also promised that the families of those who perished from the OV-10 630 Bronco bomber will get the support and assistance from the government.

“Asahan po ninyong bago tayo bumaba sa pwesto, tumatanod na sa ating himpapawid ang mga makabagot’ modernong kagamitan,” he added.

Carrying the theme, “Makabagong Lakas, Matatag na Bukas”, President Aquino also led the awarding ceremonies for this year’s celebration.

The awardees are Air Education and Training Command as the Best PAF Model Base; 3rd Air Division as the Best Division Category; Air Force Reserve Command as the Best Command Category; 520th Air Base Wing as the Best Wing Support Category; Tactical Operations Group-8, 2nd Air Division as the Best Group Tactical Category; Headquarters Support Group, HPAF as the Best Group Support Category; 250th Presidential Airlift Wing for CG’s Award for Flight Safety; 1st Air Force Wing Reserve for PAF Ready Reserve Wing; 1Lt. Eugenio Bagon for Officer of the Year; MSg. Elsito Amparo for Non-commissioned Officer of the Year; Sgt. Sheryl Toribio for Airwoman of the Year; Giovanni Pangilinan for Model Supervisor of the Year; and Pablo Lasparilla for Model Employee of the Year.

The occasion was also held to commemorate the golden anniversary of the Philippine Air Force Humanitarian Mission in Bali, Indonesia when Mount Agung erupted in 1963 and the Congo Crisis where PAF Contingent was sent as part of the United Nations’ mission.