HERITAGE TO HORIZONS: Recruiter’s persistence paid off for local retiree

Retired Senior Master Sgt. Frank Galindo, entered the Air Force Oct. 18, 1974, and
attended basic training at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas. (courtesy photo)

Retired Senior Master Sgt. Frank Galindo, entered the Air Force Oct. 18, 1974, and attended basic training at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas. (courtesy photo)

Today Frank Galindo works with Air Combat Command at Luke writing computer-based training for technical schools and other training. (photo by Airman 1st Class C.J. Hatch)

Today Frank Galindo works with Air Combat Command at Luke writing computer-based training for technical schools and other training. (photo by Airman 1st Class C.J. Hatch)

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. - -- Thirty-four years ago, a young man working in a labor camp saw an opportunity to get an education and better himself, after walking into a post office. 

Frank Galindo, Detachment 1, ACC Training Support Squadron instructional system designer, lived and worked in California as a young man. 

"After working all day cutting cauliflower I stopped at the post office on my way home," he said. "I saw a poster for the Air Force saying 'we need 18 year olds,' with a recruiter's
number, so I called. After that, he never left me alone, and the rest is history." 

As soon as he could after graduating basic training and finishing technical school Galindo began to get his education. 

"I have a master's degree in education," he said. "But I was able to get my bachelor's degree while on active duty. All Airmen should take advantage of the education and career advancement opportunities available to them." 

Getting his education and pursuing career opportunities led Galindo to many assignments. 

"For seven years I was an instructor at the Inter-American Air Forces Academy," Galindo said. "It was in Panama but has been moved to Lackland Air Force Base, Texas. We taught the same courses being taught in technical school -- only in Spanish." 

Before teaching as an instructor Galindo painted aircraft. 

"You know the F-4 in the air park? I was in charge of repainting that plane while I was assigned here at Luke." 

His career has taken him from Okinawa, Japan, to Elmendorf AFB, Alaska, with stops in between. His advice to young Airmen today is to not wait for opportunity to come to them.
"Be proactive in your career and education. You can't leave it in anybody else's hands; it's your responsibility." 

Galindo plans to continue supporting the Air Force for another 10 years as a civilian employee.