HomeNewsArticle Display

Officer father takes enlisted daughter to Air Force Ball

A missing-man table is present at the Air Force Ball. The table represents the lost and fallen service members who were honored, although absent, because they are still missing in action. This year’s Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam Air Force Ball’s theme was “Say ‘Thank You’ to an Airman.” The theme was chosen to honor the courage and service of Airmen throughout the decades.  (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

A missing-man table is present at the Air Force Ball. The table represents the lost and fallen service members who were honored, although absent, because they are still missing in action. This year’s Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam Air Force Ball’s theme was “Say ‘Thank You’ to an Airman.” The theme was chosen to honor the courage and service of Airmen throughout the decades. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

The Team Hickam Honor Guard presents the colors at the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 65th Air Force Ball, held at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. This year’s theme was, “Say ‘Thank You’ to an Airman.” The theme was chosen to honor the courage and service of Airmen throughout the decades. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

The Team Hickam Honor Guard presents the colors at the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 65th Air Force Ball, held at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. This year’s theme was, “Say ‘Thank You’ to an Airman.” The theme was chosen to honor the courage and service of Airmen throughout the decades. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

A Hawaiian performer invites an audience member from the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 65th Air Force Ball to dance center stage at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. The ball celebrated the Air Force's 65th year as a separate service and paid tribute to the heroes that have served throughout history. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

A Hawaiian performer invites an audience member from the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 65th Air Force Ball to dance center stage at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. The ball celebrated the Air Force's 65th year as a separate service and paid tribute to the heroes that have served throughout history. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

A Hawaiian performer dances center stage with an audience member at the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 65th Air Force Ball at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. The ball celebrated the Air Force's 65th year as a separate service and paid tribute to the heroes that have served throughout history. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

A Hawaiian performer dances center stage with an audience member at the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 65th Air Force Ball at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. The ball celebrated the Air Force's 65th year as a separate service and paid tribute to the heroes that have served throughout history. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

Lt. Gen. David Deptula, retired, former deputy chief of staff for Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance, speaks to attendees during the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam Air Force Ball, at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. More than 1,300 JBPH-H members came together to celebrate the Air Force's 65th anniversary. This year’s theme was, “Say ‘Thank You’ to an Airman,” honoring the courage and service of Airmen throughout the decades.  (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

Lt. Gen. David Deptula, retired, former deputy chief of staff for Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance, speaks to attendees during the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam Air Force Ball, at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. More than 1,300 JBPH-H members came together to celebrate the Air Force's 65th anniversary. This year’s theme was, “Say ‘Thank You’ to an Airman,” honoring the courage and service of Airmen throughout the decades. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

Master Sgt. Darryl McEachin from the U.S. Air Force Band of the Pacific’s Hana Hou performs a musical piece on his electronic keyboard during the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 65th Air Force Ball at Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. More than 1,300 Joint Base Pearl Harbor Hickam members came together to celebrate the Air Force's 65th anniversary. This year’s theme was, “Say ‘Thank You’ to an Airman,” honoring the courage and service of Airmen throughout the decades. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

Master Sgt. Darryl McEachin from the U.S. Air Force Band of the Pacific’s Hana Hou performs a musical piece on his electronic keyboard during the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 65th Air Force Ball at Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. More than 1,300 Joint Base Pearl Harbor Hickam members came together to celebrate the Air Force's 65th anniversary. This year’s theme was, “Say ‘Thank You’ to an Airman,” honoring the courage and service of Airmen throughout the decades. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

Mrs. Cass Gannaway and her cousin, Durward Swanson, dance and enjoy the music provided by the U.S. Air Force Band of the Pacific’s Hana Hou at the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 65th Air Force Ball held at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012.  Swanson is a Hickam Field Survivor of the Dec. 7, 1941, attacks on Oahu and served as the guest of honor. He participated in the symbolic cake cutting, which involves the youngest and oldest Airmen attendees cutting the cake. Swanson was a U.S. Army Air Corps motorcycle patrolman at Hickam when the Japanese attacked the bases here 70 years ago. Swanson and his best friend Albert Lloyd recovered the tattered U.S. flag now known as Old Glory, after the attacks. The flag is on display in the Courtyard of Heroes at the Pacific Air Forces headquarters building. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

Mrs. Cass Gannaway and her cousin, Durward Swanson, dance and enjoy the music provided by the U.S. Air Force Band of the Pacific’s Hana Hou at the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 65th Air Force Ball held at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. Swanson is a Hickam Field Survivor of the Dec. 7, 1941, attacks on Oahu and served as the guest of honor. He participated in the symbolic cake cutting, which involves the youngest and oldest Airmen attendees cutting the cake. Swanson was a U.S. Army Air Corps motorcycle patrolman at Hickam when the Japanese attacked the bases here 70 years ago. Swanson and his best friend Albert Lloyd recovered the tattered U.S. flag now known as Old Glory, after the attacks. The flag is on display in the Courtyard of Heroes at the Pacific Air Forces headquarters building. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

Maj. Jeffrey Holley, Pacific Air Forces A7K chief of strategic integration, and his daughter Airman 1st Class Samantha Holley, a C-17 loadmaster with the 535th Airlift Squadron, pose for a photo during the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 65th Air Force Ball, held at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012.  Maj. Holley invited his daughter as his date to the ball shortly after discovering that he would be stationed at JBPH-H, Hawaii with her. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

Maj. Jeffrey Holley, Pacific Air Forces A7K chief of strategic integration, and his daughter Airman 1st Class Samantha Holley, a C-17 loadmaster with the 535th Airlift Squadron, pose for a photo during the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 65th Air Force Ball, held at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. Maj. Holley invited his daughter as his date to the ball shortly after discovering that he would be stationed at JBPH-H, Hawaii with her. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

Durward Swanson cuts a piece of cake with Gen. Herbert “Hawk” Carlisle, Pacific Air Forces commander, and Airman 1st Class Alexandria Wensink, 15th Aerospace Medicine Squadron public health technician, at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. Swanson, a Hickam Field Survivor of the Dec. 7, 1941, attacks on Oahu, was the guest of honor and participated in the symbolic cake cutting, which involves the youngest and oldest Airmen present cutting the cake. Swanson was a U.S. Army Air Corps motorcycle patrolman at Hickam when the Japanese attacked the bases on the Island of Oahu 70 years ago. Swanson and his best friend, Albert Lloyd, lowered the flag from the flagpole after the attacks. The tattered U.S. flag is now known as Old Glory, and is on display in the Courtyard of Heroes at the PACAF headquarters building. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

Durward Swanson cuts a piece of cake with Gen. Herbert “Hawk” Carlisle, Pacific Air Forces commander, and Airman 1st Class Alexandria Wensink, 15th Aerospace Medicine Squadron public health technician, at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Sept. 14, 2012. Swanson, a Hickam Field Survivor of the Dec. 7, 1941, attacks on Oahu, was the guest of honor and participated in the symbolic cake cutting, which involves the youngest and oldest Airmen present cutting the cake. Swanson was a U.S. Army Air Corps motorcycle patrolman at Hickam when the Japanese attacked the bases on the Island of Oahu 70 years ago. Swanson and his best friend, Albert Lloyd, lowered the flag from the flagpole after the attacks. The tattered U.S. flag is now known as Old Glory, and is on display in the Courtyard of Heroes at the PACAF headquarters building. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jerome S. Tayborn)

JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii -- The Air Force Ball is an opportunity to celebrate the Air Force Birthday and this year, one father got to introduce the tradition to his newly enlisted daughter.

Maj. Jeffrey Holley, Chief of Strategic Integration for Pacific Air Forces A7K directorate, recently arrived here at his new assignment. He joined his daughter, Airman 1st Class Samantha Holley, a C-17 loadmaster with the 535th Airlift Squadron here.

"I was deployed when I learned of my new assignment, and I was surprised and happy to find out I would be stationed with my daughter," he said. "I found out about the ball, and I knew immediately that I wanted to take her."

Airman Holley said she was initially reluctant to attend the ball before her father invited her.

"After he asked me, I got really excited about going," she said.

The major, who arrived at the base about a month ago, had attended several other events in the past and said he likes the Air Force Ball in particular because of the tradition behind it.

"It's nice to be part of a big event and to reflect on Air Force heritage," he said.

He said the main reason he was excited was to be able to participate in a once-in-a lifetime opportunity with his daughter. It was a risk to buy the tickets without knowing whether Airman Holley would be flying a mission or not on the date of the ball, but he figured he could always donate her ticket to another Airman if it didn't work out.

The timing worked out though, and the two were able to attend.

At the ball, the pair watched performances by Hawaiian dancers, ate dinner, listened to the speeches and posed for a portrait photograph. Afterward, Major Holley had an opportunity to introduce his daughter to several of his co-workers.

Airman Holley also introduced her dad to some of the people she worked with.

The family members said the experience was wonderful and are making plans to attend again next year.

"Going to the ball with her was everything I'd hoped for and more," said Major Holley.