Operation Ham Grenade explodes with cheer

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Mary Andom
  • 446th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
The rumble and excitement warmed the chilly air as a parade of motorcycles, trucks and volunteers rolled up to the 446th Airlift Wing Airman and Family Readiness Center parking lot for a holiday mission.  

The 9th Annual Operation Ham Grenade brought 20 local community members and volunteers dressed up as elves and Santa’s helpers to deliver complimentary hams to Reserve Citizen Airmen. 

The event, organized by the Air Force Association, Association of the United States Army and the Pierce Military Business Alliance, offers service members with a lending hand during the holidays. 

“For the holidays, we provide support to the families. This is how we give back and help out our Airmen,” said Bill Striegel, Air Force Association, Northwest Region President.

The mission, which lasted eight minutes, was executed with military precision. An assembly line formed and volunteers hopped on the back of the truck to hand out hams. As quickly as they came, they left. 

In one day, Ham Grenade delivered 60 hams to the 446th Airlift Wing with a total of 1,500 hams across 20 units at Joint Base Lewis-McChord and Camp Murray. The hams will be distributed to Rainier Wing Airmen who were nominated by their leadership or to those who signed up to receive the hams. 

Jill Marconi-Pyclik, A&FRC director, said Ham Grenade is also an opportunity for veterans to give back to those who serve. 

“Many of our community partners are retired military or work within our member’s lives,” she said. “There is a strong military connection with our community.”

Our services are here to help all members of our families but also single Airmen; we need our families and troops to be taken care of so the mission is successful, she said. 

Contact the A&FRC, Bldg. 1207, or call (253) 982-5530 for more information on available resources for families and military members.