Peters, Stabenow Introduce Resolutions Recognizing Centennials at Selfridge Air National Guard Base and Fort Custer Training Center

Friday, June 30, 2017

U.S. Senators Gary Peters (D-MI) and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) announced they introduced two resolutions in the U.S. Senate to recognize Selfridge Air National Guard Base and the Fort Custer Training Center on their 100th anniversaries.  


“Since their establishment 100 years ago, Selfridge and Fort Custer have been central to Michigan’s military history and continue to play critical roles in our national defense,” said Senator Peters, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee and former Lieutenant Commander in the U.S. Navy Reserve. “From defeating tyranny in Nazi-occupied Europe to preparing Guardsmen to combat emerging threats like ISIS, the brave men and women at both of these installations have always stood ready to answer the call to defend our nation. I met some of the most dedicated and patriotic servicemembers when I drilled at Selfridge as a Navy Reservist, and I will never forget their sacrifices. I am proud to honor Selfridge, Fort Custer and Michigan’s National Guard on the last century of achievements, and I look forward to seeing how they will lead our state and our nation into the next 100 years.”


“With a century of service tracing back to World War I, Fort Custer and Selfridge continue to play a vital role in our state's and nation’s defense,” said Senator Stabenow. “Both military installations have deep community roots, support thousands of local jobs, and are well-positioned for future missions and new opportunities. This centennial gives us an opportunity to celebrate Michigan’s rich military heritage and thank the men and women in uniform who have put their lives on the line to defend our nation.”


“It's a very exciting time for the 127th Wing. Selfridge has a legacy of defending democracy, serving both state and nation, through continuous aviation spanning the past 100 years,” said General John Slocum, Commander of the 127th Wing at Selfridge Air National Guard Base. “As we lean forward into the next 100 years, we continually look for new and innovative ways to remain a solid and sustainable force. Selfridge is a strong contender as one of the top five Air National Guard bases for the new F-35 Lightning II fighter jet mission. This speaks volumes about the caliber of the men and women who support the many missions here at Selfridge. Selfridge stands ready for unparalleled evolution and continued growth over the next 100 years.”


“It is very fitting that on July 1st, 100 years to the day of the official groundbreaking of Camp Custer in 1917, we celebrate Fort Custer's century of service to the State and Nation,” Lt. Colonel Steve Wilson, Fort Custer Training Center Post Commander. “As the current custodians of this Garrison, it is a tremendous honor to recognize Fort Custer's contributions to the Nation during two World Wars through present day while setting the conditions for another successful century of service.”


The Selfridge Air National Guard Base was first commissioned by the U.S. Army on July 1, 1917 in Harrison Township. Named after Army 1st Lieutenant Thomas E. Selfridge, who saw the potential of powered flight, today it is host to more than 30 tenant units representing every branch of the Armed Forces. In 2015, the 127th Attack Wing based at Selfridge deployed approximately 500 airmen in support of Operation Inherent Resolve, the mission to eliminate ISIS. Currently, Selfridge is a finalist to host the Air National Guard’s new F-35 mission.


Fort Custer was constructed as Camp Custer in 1917 in Augusta, near Battle Creek. Fort Custer was formally designated as a permanent military base during World War II, where more than 300,000 servicemembers trained. Fort Custer continues to serve as a state of the art training facility for the Michigan National Guard and other branches of the Armed Forces, including Reserve Officers’ Training Corps students. Currently, Fort Custer is one of three finalists to host a missile defense interceptor site for the East Coast.