Chief Master Sgt. Larry Williams, Air Mobility Command command chief, closed out his 30-year career Nov. 30 at the place where it began: Dover Air Force Base.
The retirement ceremony, held at the AMC Museum, celebrated the significance of Williams’ career, one that uniquely and almost exclusively served within a single command, specifically, Air Mobility Command.
“Seventeen of those 30 years in the Air Force were spent right here at Dover Air Force Base in three different assignments,” said Williams. “It’s just been an awesome career and I couldn’t have thought of a better place to end it than right here at Dover AFB where I started it.”
Gen. Maryanne Miller, AMC commander, who began working with Williams when she took command of AMC in September, said the chief’s leadership and mentorship extends to various facets of his life.
“When I look at the Chief and his family, I see in Chief Williams an Airman of vision who is a passionate role model for his immediate family and his Air Force family,” said Miller. He has dedicated his life to serving others, ensuring our Airmen always had the necessary support, direction, and mentorship to accomplish the mission and succeed in doing so. Every morning he woke up thinking about Rapid Global Mobility and how to position others for success.”
Though a 30-year career came full circle at Dover, it was a letter written years prior by 8-year-old Williams that signaled a path toward a mobility future. This letter, printed on the back of the retirement ceremony program, mapped out his childhood dreams that would later turn to reality.
“I will be a big strong man when I grow up,” it said. “I will be in the Air Force so I can drive a big Army plane, then I might drive the biggest plane in the world, but I have to get to be big and strong to fly that plane.“
Air Force blue became his service of choice, Williams went on to achieve his dream. He flew on the largest U.S. military aircraft in the world, the C-5 Galaxy. Williams served as a C-5 crew chief, flight engineer and career enlisted aviator during the first half of his career, while earning multiple accolades along the way.
He later served in multiple superintendent roles and as the command chief for the 515th Air Mobility Operations Wing and the U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Center before becoming the command chief at AMC.
As Williams hangs up his uniform representing three decades of service, he also wraps up what could be considered his longest running achievement: a kept promise and fulfilling the dreams of his former 8-year-old self.
“Those are dreams that can only be made true by servicing the United States Air Force, in my opinion,” said Williams. “That is the thing that is the most memorable to me… that as a small child I saw something that I wanted to do. I had a dream, I joined the Air Force and they helped make that dream come true.”