As chief of the Air Force’s Casualty Headquarters, Todd Rose is charged with a mission unlike any other in the United States Air Force. When an airman is killed, wounded, injured, or even takes ill, it is Todd’s job is to ensure actions are taken to support the airman and family.
When asked to sum up his job, Todd says, “We provide unparalleled support when tragedy strikes.” The “we” he’s referring to are the dedicated men and women that make up his team, or his “work family” as he calls them.
Through receipt of a casualty report from one of the more than 150 Casualty Assistance Representatives, across more than eighty bases, Todd is aware of an incident within four hours of its occurrence anywhere around the world. His team of twenty-six military and civilian casualty technicians is the hub of operations, and immediately gets to work ensuring family members are notified. Separate from the mortuary operations at Dover Air Base in Delaware, the casualty office is tasked with providing services and support for wounded, injured and ill airmen, and, if necessary, survivors.
Todd’s call to service and family values were instilled into him long before his military career began. He was born in a small town of 4,500 people located in rural Western Kentucky. “There was a real sense of community in Benton. Everyone knew everyone. Around town I was known as ‘Bob or Nancy’s boy’,” Todd recalls fondly and then quotes the old adage, “It takes a village….” Then adds, “that could be not truer of my upbringing.”
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Southern Calls Issue 33
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