Archive of: In Service



February Issue 1 2014

Paratrooper collapses, dies following jump

A Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson paratrooper died at the hospital Thursday, Jan. 30 after collapsing following a jump at the Malemute Drop Zone. Sgt. Jose Maria Pasillas, 34, underwent emergency surgery for a torn aorta at Providence Medical Center and was pronounced dead just before 8 p.m., according to a JBER press release. He collapsed about five hours earlier.

January Issue 5 2014

Stuck in the muck

After three years of driving in Alaska, I got my van stuck in the snow. My husband needed a ride home from work; the repair shop needed his truck for another day. I could tell the snowplow had been by the house earlier in the day, and there was a berm at the end of the driveway.

Video sparks hope for captured soldier’s family January Issue 4 2014

Video sparks hope for captured soldier’s family

BOISE, Idaho — The family of U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, who was captured more than four years ago in Afghanistan, says a new video of the soldier believed to have been taken in the last month has bolstered its resolve to bring him home safely to Idaho.

Marching toward perfection January Issue 4 2014

Marching toward perfection

“Forward, march. Half-step, march. Platoon, halt.” Kim Julian, Chugiak High Cadet Lieutenant’s voice echoed through the crowd-packed gym at the 2014 Eagle River High School JROTC Drill Competition on Saturday, Jan. 18. Thirteen immaculately dressed teams performed in seven rounds of competitions during the daylong event.

JBER to lose troops January Issue 3 2014

JBER to lose troops

By the end of 2015, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson will be a little emptier. That’s when the last of 780 Army soldiers depart for other assignments, retirement or early retirement. But don’t worry, while JBER will be losing manpower, Fort Wainwright in Fairbanks will gain 367 soldiers.

January Issue 3 2014

Discussing military issues

Last week, I decided to do my best to be a productive member of my military community. I participated in JBER’s Joint Family Action Plan (JFAP) conference. The words “Joint Family Action Plan” don’t mean a whole lot to me. However, it’s actually a cool thing. JBER community members get to submit issues that they would like to see changed in military life. The issues are many and varied, including housing, schools, childcare, benefits, and on and on.

Marines delay female fitness plan after half fail January Issue 2 2014

Marines delay female fitness plan after half fail

WASHINGTON — More than half of female Marines in boot camp can’t do three pullups, the minimum standard that was supposed to take effect with the new year, prompting the Marine Corps to delay the requirement, part of the process of equalizing physical standards to integrate women into combat jobs.

January Issue 1 2014

New year brings uncertainty

It is the beginning of a brand new year. Generally, I love this time of year. I look out at a blank slate in which I have 12 months to try to do things better, and in which I get to plan all sorts of new adventures. This year, I’m having a hard time when I begin to think too far out.

January Issue 1 2014

A place to ease the burden

Military life can be difficult. This is especially true in Alaska, where the majority of incoming servicemen and women hail from the Lower 48. Many find themselves ill prepared for the weather, the long seize of winter darkness and the hefty cost of living.

Fallen soldiers honored December Issue 4 2013

Fallen soldiers honored

Dozens gathered at the Fort Richardson National Cemetery on Saturday, Dec. 14 to pay homage to the soldiers who died while serving our country. Seven wreaths were placed in honor of those who served in the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard, Merchant Marines and for prisoners of war/missing in action. Following that ceremony, volunteers laid wreaths at several graves.