WHITEMAN AIR FORCE BASE, Mo. --
A Team Whiteman Airman received a Kansas City Chief’s Salute to Service football Aug. 27, 2020.
Normally, the KC Chiefs honor military members by welcoming more than 150 personnel to participate in a training camp session, however, due to COVID-19 restricting and the current operating environment they could not hold a normal training camp. Instead, the Chiefs celebrated virtually by selecting one service member from each military branch in the region to receive a football and participate in a video call with former Kansas City Chiefs linebacker, Shawn Barber.
“I am beyond ecstatic for this opportunity,” said Staff Sgt. Brooke Garibay, a 509th Logistics Readiness Squadron training manager. “Football is my favorite sport and receiving such an awesome gift is a dream. I am very thankful to be nominated and for being chosen to represent Team Whiteman.”
Garibay said ever since she experienced how passionate other Chiefs fans were during her first Chiefs game, she fell in love with the atmosphere of Arrowhead Stadium and decided to become a Chiefs fan.
“Opportunities like this boost our Airmen’s morale by publically recognizing their service and commitment to their country,” said Chief Master Sgt. Chad Ziegelbein, 509th Operations Group superintendent. “The Kansas City Chiefs and Whiteman have a long standing partnership and work on a variety of events throughout the year to strengthen bonds between the local community and the military. These outreach events allow the community to gain a better understanding of the service members assigned to Whiteman and the mission they support.”
The KC Chiefs chose Garibay based on her contributions to the 509th BW mission and it was a bonus that she was a fan.
“All of our military members contribute to protecting our freedom in their own unique ways,” said Barber. “I am honored and humbled for the opportunity to salute and appreciate our military members. I don’t want to just talk about it, I want to show it. I’m thankful that I can raise my family in the KC area with the freedom they’ve provided.”