Wednesday, June 20 , 2018, 12:33 pm | Partly Cloudy 67º


Student Essay: Can I Help You With That?

Air Force satellite operator's job may not be up in the air but he still satisfies his love of flying.

“Can I help you with that?” asked the young man as he walked into the airplane hangar at the Lompoc Airport. The man’s name was Ross Wetmore, and the hangar he was walking into belonged to Doug DePew, who was working on putting together a sign.

The reason Wetmore was there at the airport was because of his love of airplanes. That love was what initially brought him into the Air Force, and that job had caused him to move to Lompoc, because he was stationed at Vandenberg Air Force Base, where he took classes while doing his job.

Wetmore is an officer in the Air Force and a Satellite Operator. As an Operator he is in a support position and is located in the United States, and therefore will not be deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan.

Wetmore went to school at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Ariz., where he got his degree in aeronautical engineering. He then went on to the Air Force. He actually doesn’t fly a plane for his job, and the reason for that was that when he first flew a plane, he got airsick. But he kept flying, and flying, and flying, until he didn’t get sick anymore. One time he flew a plane, and the owner said that he just “greased it in,” a perfect landing!  But, because he did get airsick one time, he is currently not allowed to fly planes for his job.

The Air Force is only one branch of the military, along with the Army, Navy Marines Corps and Coast Guard.

Wetmore went on a trip a while back, and DePew never knew he had come back, until one day, he walked into his hangar and said, “Can I help you with that?”

Noozhawk intern Brennan will be a homeschool seventh-grader in the fall.

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