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Arneson takes command

Command pilot to lead 728th Airlift Squadron

728th Airlift Squadron Commander Lt Col Daniel Arneson embraces his wife, Heather, after giving her a bouquet at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, March 6, 2021. U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ann Butler.

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JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD - Lt. Col. Daniel Arneson assumed command of the 728th Airlift Squadron at McChord Field on March 6, in a ceremony presided by Lt. Col. Cynthia Welch, 446th Operations Group commander.

"Lt. Col. Daniel Arneson is the perfect officer to build upon the model and legacy of the 728th Airlift Squadron," said Welch. "I know that Dan will stand up for his people and he will be passionate in ensuring they get what they need to carry out their mission and work in an environment with dignity and respect."

Arneson is a command pilot with more than 4,900 hours on the T-37B Tweet, T-1A Jayhawk, MC-12W Liberty and C-17 Globemaster III aircraft. Arneson is also an instructor and evaluator pilot on the C-17 aircraft.

The mission for the 728th is Ready Airlift for America, or RAFA. The 728th operates the C-17 aircraft and transports troops and cargo globally. Earlier last year, the squadron helped transport across the U.S., Perseverance, a 3.5-billion-dollar rover that is currently on Mars.

"To the men and women of the 728th, the mission you do here is amazing," said Arneson. "You do incredible things, and you make it look easy, but it's not."

Arneson thanked attendees and ended his speech with a commitment to the squadron.

"I will finish with one of my favorite quotes, 'There is never a crowd on the extra mile'," said Arneson. "I am looking forward to going the extra mile for you; thank you for letting me be a part of the mission."

Arneson previously served as the chief of standardization and evaluation for the 313th Airlift Squadron at McChord Field.

The pandemic prevented a large gathering for the ceremony, so the event was live streamed on the 446th Airlift Wing Facebook Page

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