Promises kept

Dan Reinhard


I kept a mistress for many years where I worked at Minot Air Force base. There were many long days we spent together; twelve to sixteen hours and sometimes seven days a week – endless nights of trying to fix what malfunctions happened to her before putting her to bed for the evening. My wife was aware and though not totally pleased with my passion, she understood.

Last evening as my wife and I were enjoying a cocktail on our deck, the soft background music was drowned out by the roar of beautiful eight engines playing music to me from above. I stood and waved to her and watched as my beloved lady flew a low level maneuver over my home and turned north toward the Minot airport. I traveled back in time remembering so many thousands of hours I devoted to her. Fond memories that I will never forget.

Many years ago while working as a civilian, I met with the 5th Bomb Wing Commander, Colonel Kennedy in his home after it was announced that he was selected for promotion to brigadier general. He was preparing to leave the base for a new assignment and asked me: “Dan, what would you like me to do before I leave?” I said: “Sir, I’d like to see a ROTC program started in Minot.”

He seemed surprised and said, “You mean a Junior ROTC program?” Yes, I said. But there is one more thing sir… “Please take care of that old girl out there on the flight line.” He smiled and said: “I’ll do my part, consider it done.”

Although I’m relatively certain that he didn’t do it all by himself, I’d like to believe he kept his promises. The world still understands that fighters make contingencies but when the B-52 flies, she still makes policy.