Air National Guard honors city of Madera

FRESNO, Calif.

Madera is now an official part of an F-15 Eagle. Madera native Col. Clay Garrison unveiled the new nose art on his fighter jet at Friday's ceremony. It's an effort to recognize the cities that airmen call home. The 144th Fighter Wing commander says it's important to form connections with the local communities his fellow airmen live and work in.

"Because we are a community-based organization, we can't do what we do without members of the community coming up and joining in serving, so making that connection between community and airman was very important," said Garrison.

"We take great pride in our native son Col. Garrison and all the great things he has done and the great example he has set," said Madera Mayor Robert Poythress.

As a 1984 Madera High School graduate, Garrison says he feels that hometown pride.

"My whole family is from Madera. My wife's family is from Madera. It's very important for us to make that connection, and it was very exciting," said Garrison.

In addition to honoring the city, Garrison recognized all native Madera airmen in attendance.

Garrison says he hopes this program continues to highlight the values of the Air National Guard: mission, community and airmen.

The Cities of Honor program plans to honor up to 18 new cities in the near future.

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