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Ausborn memorial
Maj. Jeff Ausborn’s family and friends watch a slide show in the Ausborn Memorial Heritage Room during a dedication ceremony April 18 at the 99th Flying Training Squadron at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph. Ausborn was deployed from JBSA-Randolph and killed April 27, 2011, in Kabul, Afghanistan, when a shooter opened fire at the Kabul International Airport killing eight Airmen and one American contractor. (U.S. Air Force photo by Melissa Peterson)
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Flying squadron honors, remembers instructor pilot's ultimate sacrifice

Posted 4/18/2014   Updated 4/18/2014 Email story   Print story


by Airman 1st Class Alexandria Slade
Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph Public Affairs

4/18/2014 - JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas -- Maj. Jeff 'Oz' Ausborn, 41, was killed April 27, 2011, in Kabul, Afghanistan, when a shooter opened fire at the Kabul International Airport, killing eight Airmen and one American contractor.

Ausborn, who was an instructor pilot deployed from Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, was honored during a heritage room and aircraft dedication April 18. Members of the 99th Flying Training Squadron, a squadron of the 12th Flying Training Wing at JBSA-Randolph, hosted the event and Ausborn's family members.

The dedication of the Major Jeffery Ausborn Memorial Heritage Room included words from fellow squadron members and the 99th FTS commander, followed by a video presentation of a 90-mile march in 2012 from the 9/11 Memorial to Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J. completed by 99th FTS members in remembrance of the those individuals killed during the April 2011 incident in Kabul, Afghanistan.

"The journey to this day has been a long one," Lt. Col. Gavin Marks, 99th FTS commander, said. "It has been one of the highlights of my time in command."

Through lengthy renovations, Marks said the small space used by squadron members and visitors has been transformed into "a multipurpose room that touches many people and a perfect spot to memorialize 'Oz'."

Characteristics of the heritage room include photos, medals earned and personal mementos representing Ausborn's service in the Air Force, along with an inscribed 'paver' carried during the march in his remembrance.

"What we aimed to achieve was a space that was warm and inviting and would encourage individuals to come in, look at photos, look at the memorabilia, read the articles and reflect on the ultimate sacrifice this hero gave for our squadron," Marks said.

Mentioned throughout the event by friends and coworkers was Ausborn's kind personality and passion for flying.

Maj. Jeffery Dalrymple, a fellow 99th FTS member, said that despite Ausborn's desire to roam the skies, he always put his family first.

"Jeff really liked flying, but he loved his family," he said.

The event concluded with an unveiling of a T-1A trainer. The T-1A was the last aircraft Ausborn flew before his deployment, marked with a special inscription in Ausborn's memory.

"I miss him. He was a wonderful man, husband, father and son who never made his family feel second to his love of flying," Suzanna Ausborn, Ausborn's widow, said. "We're so happy we have a piece of him we can come to see."

Ausborn was a native of Gadsden, Ala. He was deployed to the 438th Air Expeditionary Wing where he served as a C-27 instructor pilot to new Afghan pilots. He was a senior pilot, logging more than 2,300 hours in both airlift and trainer aircraft, to include the T-37B, T-44, C-130E, T-6A, T-1A and C-27. He is survived by his wife, Suzanna, his five children, Emily Ausborn, Eric Ausborn, Shelby Ausborn, Mitchell Maloy, Summer Maloy, and his parents, Clifford and Faye Ausborn.

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