301 FW MXS Airman holds the F-16 mission together

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Kedesha Pennant
  • 301st Fighter Wing Public Affairs

The strength of the wing lies within the quality, service and proficiency of its Airmen. In this highlight, we focus on one Airman who literally helps to hold the mission together. Staff Sgt. William Duhon, 301st Fighter Wing Maintenance Squadron aircraft structural maintenance craftsman, was selected by his MXS leadership to be featured as one of the wing’s outstanding Airman during the December 2020 Unit Training Assembly.


Duhon, a Houston native, has served in the Air Force for the past eight years. During his first four military years, he was Active Duty and stationed at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany. He has been with the wing since August 2016.


As an aircraft structural maintenance craftsman, Duhon and his shop play an important part as a one-of-a-kind piece in the F-16 Fighting Falcon puzzle.


“The impact this job has on the mission is pretty significant because we ensure the structural integrity of the aircraft and the corrosion-preventative coating of the paint,” Duhon said. “We’re kind of the ‘end all-be all’ because we take off significant portions of the aircraft, fabricate a new one and then install it. A lot of agencies swap out parts, but we [must] make [our parts]. We [ensure] there is no corrosion so the jet will not fall apart while it’s flying.”


After completing his Active Duty first-term enlistment, Duhon became a Traditional Reservist and later would become an Air Reserve Technician. An ART position is a full-time vocation which supports a specific unit whereas a TR position entails serving only one weekend a month and two weeks throughout the year. One of his reasons for joining the Reserve was the ability to keep in touch with his friends. When an ART position became available within the unit, his decision to transition from a TR into that position made for a perfect fit.


“I’ve been able to know my leadership throughout my career, and I liked the way they managed [their] people and empowered [them],” he said. “I work with great people and [there is a sense of] camaraderie.”


His hobbies, which allow him to express his creativity, include playing the drums, playing video games and reading books. His favorite sports teams are any teams from Houston. However, he believes the Kansas City Chiefs will win the championship again and the University of Alabama will win the College Football Playoff National Championship.


Duhon and his wife plan on driving to Houston to spend Christmas with their families because, for him, the best part about the holiday season is being with family.


Some may have a New Year’s resolution, but Duhon said he does not since he constantly tries to improve himself throughout the year. He strives to progress and get better each day.

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