Wednesday, January 30, 2013

End Of Another Chapter

This past week officially marked the end of UPT for the Etheridge family. The hubs and his fellow classmates received their wings and officially became pilots in the U.S. Air Force. Pretty neat huh? ;) We were also blessed enough to have family fly all the way in from Georgia to help us celebrate and attend all the fun events the base had planned for the class of 13-04.

This past week was filled with a lot of different emotions for us both as we celebrated the end of a very busy, stressful, and exciting year, while also saying farewell to some of the amazing people we have been blessed to of met because of our time here at Laughlin. After Friday night everyone will begin to go their separate ways as they head off to different forms of training and eventually on to their particular aircraft.

Amidst all of the fun events this past weekend I was able to reflect on our year of UPT, as a married couple. As we were out on the flight line taking photos with fellow classmates and their significant others, I realized how many special and truly precious friendships we have cultivated over this past year and a half. We met some truly amazing people whom we will never forget and created relationships we will hold on to for the rest of our lives.

If there is one truly special part of being at Laughlin it's that you are forced to gain and foster such close relationships in order to maintain some sort of social life. With not much entertainment available in the town your sole source of "weekend fun" comes from hanging out with those that you already spend a ton of time with during the week in the flight room. By luck, we were placed in a class with some particularly awesome people, whom we spent many a weekend hanging out with and passing the time in Del Rio. I am certain that God placed each and every one of these people in our lives for a reason and I know that I am going to miss each of them dearly.

I am so proud of the hubs and our friends that got their wings on Friday! It will be hard to close another chapter and say farewell to our Laughlin family who we've come to love dearly, but I know God has some amazing things in store for us as we move on to our next adventure!

After retreat

Getting those wings ;)

Breaking of the wings

Love this girl. She's been by rock throughout
this adventure!

The other two lovely spouses
of 13-04! I'm going to miss
these ladies!

Fellow T-38ers

Before the banquet

"The Weekend Crew"

I also found this photo from when the hubs commissioned and I was pinning on his shoulder boards. Apparently I am not gifted at "pinning" anything on his uniform. It's always quite the task for me...

The Etheridges


  1. Beautiful!!! Can you believe it's over?! Time flies and God is so good to bless us all every day :)
    So happy for you both as you start a new chapter - can't wait to see where it takes you ;)

  2. Oh no! I had the same problem putting on those shoulder boards, I hope I don't have a problem with the wings too! You look so beautiful in all of these photos Mary Ellen!

  3. Gorgeous as always! And I LOVE that last picture! How awesome of you to be there for both of those epic once in a lifetime events! :)