Aircrew Life Support & Equipment

Aircrew Life Support & Aircrew Flight Equipment Veterans and Retirees


This site is dedicated to preserving and sharing the history of the USAF Aircrew Flight Equipment Career Field. The links on this website will take you to information on the history of the career field and information on some of the people and equipment that shaped the profession…..

About Membership

Because of issues applying for membership to our website, we are eliminating the membership requirement to access everything on our website.  The protected pages will remain protected and will require visitors to the site to contact me for the password.  I can be contacted via my cell phone at 760-684-3790 or email me at [email protected]

Let me know if you experience any other issues with the website. – Bob McElwain

About USAF ALS/AFE continued

This site is dedicated to preserving and sharing the history of the USAF Aircrew Flight Equipment Career Field. The links on this website will take you to information on the history of the career field and information on some of the people and equipment that shaped the profession that was once called Survival Training and Personal Equipment (PE), then Aircrew Life Support (ALS), and now with the merger of Aircrew Life Support and Survival Equipment, call Aircrew Flight Equipment (AFE).

As a PE, ALS, or AFE technician, there were things we did that helped aircrews get off the ground and back on it safely. We conducted aircrew training that we hoped no one would ever need. We were put in charge of ensuring all flight equipment from flight helmets and oxygen masks to parachutes were in perfect working order. We were also responsible for ensuring all survival equipment like survival vests, survival kits, life rafts and all of their components were ready to go should they be needed. If an aircrew member did need to make use of the emergency equipment we maintained, it meant the difference between life and death, so our work had to be perfect.

Those were some of the best days of our lives and now we look back and say wow, what a ride! Ever wonder what the career field is like today and where all the people you met along the way are? Well, we’re here on this website, and on our Facebook page. We’re so glad you stopped by, but we want you to join our organization, the USAF Aircrew Life Support/Aircrew Flight Equipment Veterans and Retirees Group. Although established and managed by retirees, our organization welcomes all current and former members of the USAF Aircrew Protection profession whether you are still serving, retired, or separated and regardless of military or civilian rank, grade, position, or classification. We also invite members of our sister services and the private sector who work in a related profession to join us.

Bob McElwain

Stay up to date - Subscribe
We moved away from using newsletter tools like Mail Chimp. Now we are using Jetpack Subscribe. It is easy to subscribe and unsubscribe and it has a much higher chance of getting to your inbox. If you subscribe you will receive an excerpt in your email with a link to view the entire Post or Newsletter.


Join 344 other subscribers
Navigating this website

At the time of this writing this website has 244 Posts and 45 Pages. Posts or Blog Posts as they are called fall into categories. There are currently 15 categories.

If after scanning through the navigation menu, you cannot find something, use the search feature. You can access the Search feature at the top of the site (hard to see Magnifying Search IconGlass icon) or on the Right side of a Blog Post on a computer or the bottom of the website on a smartphone or tablet.


Note: This site is “responsively designed” meaning anything to the right (in a column) on a computer screen will automatically shift to the bottom on tables and phones. Yes, I put this info in here for all us old times! 🙂

Best Regards,

Mike Kelly

Latest Blog Posts

Don’t forget to Subscribe!

In Loving Memory of CMSgt Leaster Williamson

Obituary of Leaster Garland Williamson 1929 - 2023   Leaster Garland Williamson affectionally, known as LG was born in Varney, West Virginia on March 10, 1929, to Leck and Virginia Williamson and died on August 21, 2023, at the age of 94. He was the oldest of...

In Loving Memory of Don Elrod

Donald Lee Elrod | 1937 - 2023 | Obituary October 27, 1937 - June 21, 2023 Sign Guestbook| View Guestbook Entries| Send Sympathy Card Donald Lee Elrod died June 21, 2023, at his home in Bryant, Arkansas, surrounded by family and friends. He was 85 years old. Don...

Jun, 2023 Newsletter

Jun, 2023 Newsletter

Tribute to CMSgt (Ret) Bruce Yarwood

CMSgt Bruce Allen Yarwood Chief Yarwood’ passed away on January 4th, 2023 following the passing of his wife on October 17th, 2022.  A memorial service is planned for both of them sometime in July 2023.  Bruce loved keeping up with the news and history of the...

In Loving Memory of MSgt (Ret) Larry and Deborah Dutton

  DEWEY, OKLA. - Larry and Deborah Dutton, formerly of Eureka, died December 19, 2022, at their home in Dewey, Okla. Larry was born January 27, 1949, in Kingman, the son of Wendell and Peggy Gibson Dutton. A resident of Dewey, Okla. and previously of Eureka, he...

In Loving Memory of MSgt Donald Tinker

  Donald (Donnie) Vern Tinker, Born March 19, 1953, in Chattanooga, Tennessee suddenly and unexpectedly passed away in an accident on July 7, 2022, doing what he loved to do, riding his Vespa on the way to the movies after buying a ticket to the Cheney Rodeo. He...