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Every cog counts

Staff Sgt. Kyle Fletcher, 349th Air Mobility Wing financial management specialist, knows that while his job requires a meticulous attention to detail that can become tedious, the results of his work impact people who count on his diligence. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken Wright)

Staff Sgt. Kyle Fletcher, 349th Air Mobility Wing financial management specialist, knows that while his job requires a meticulous attention to detail that can become tedious, the results of his work impact people who count on his diligence. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken Wright)

TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif -- Toiling in the glow of large computer monitors may lack the excitement of more high profile Air Force jobs, but Staff Sgt. Kyle Fletcher knows his work is an essential cog in the gears that make the Air Force machine move forward.

Fletcher is a 349th Air Mobility Wing financial management specialist, and if he fails, bad things will happen. People won’t get paid, work won’t get accomplished, and commanders will get very unhappy, very fast. So failure is not an option.

“I think my job has a serious impact on our Citizen Airmen, the wing and the base; even all the way up to Air Force Reserve Command. There really are no small failures in our business,” said Fletcher.

Not everyone has the patience and determination to specialize in managing Air Force budgets, but Fletcher, a Jamestown, Indiana native, has a calm Midwestern demeanor that serves him well as he parses through enough paperwork to choke a work mule.

“We may have a million dollars in a budget, but it’s not like we can just whip out the checkbook. We have to do a lot of digging and researching to find the dollars and cents that put people to work. It’s not easy. That money may be divided in 40 different areas, and in 40 different places, and we have to go find it,” Fletcher said with a grin.

No matter how difficult or time-consuming the task at hand becomes, Fletcher takes the pressure in stride because he knows what he does matters, especially to Airmen who rely on their hard-earned military pay.

“For the Airman, a paycheck may help cover car repair, rent or their child’s college, so we can’t afford to fail them. The same is true for the mission. Our office has an important responsibility to help our people, our unit and our entire command.”