The faces behind the food

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Allison Martin

Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, has 583 dorm Airmen who rely on the Magellan Dining Facility for breakfast, lunch and dinner. That is a lot of meals to be made every single day. The food service Airmen assigned to the 36th Force Support Squadron work hand in hand with civilian contractors to feed a variety of foods to hundreds of Airmen.

Our Airmen have been working with the contractor, ICAN Resources, for 11 years. Some of the employees have been cooking for and with Airmen for over 20 years through different contracts and means.

“I assist the Airmen and if they are interested I share everything I’ve learned.” said Ricky Eata, civilian cook with over 20 years of experience.

When preparing for the next meal, Airmen and civilians check their to-do lists and talk with the shift leads to delegate tasks. Duties that a food service Airmen might have are; turning on cooking equipment, frying food, cooking vegetables, taking inventory, manning the grill, and serving the customers. Everyone in the kitchen helps each other out when needed. The Airmen also train other food service members from different branches who are on temporary duty here.

Additionally, food service Airmen put together to-go meals for Airmen who either work far away from the DFAC, on the Northwest Field, or Airmen actively involved in an exercise. These are sometimes up to nearly 100 premade meals that have to be ready for pick-up.

“People always need to eat,” said U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Alicia Gullory, food service journeyman with the 36 FSS. “We’re a 24 hour manned operation and even though we have set scheduled times for people to come in, we're still feeding people even outside of those hours.”

Making sure every Airmen is fed and cooking every meal every day is no easy feat. The Airmen and civilians cohesively get the job done whilst knowing the importance behind it.