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Local cancer patient promoted to honorary Chief Master Sergeant

  • Published
  • By Joseph Stahl
  • 178th Wing Public Affairs
More than 15 members of the 178th Wing, Ohio Air National Guard, Springfield Ohio honored Barrett Fitzsimmons during a special ceremony making him an honorary Ohio Air National Guard member and promoted him to the rank of Chief Master Sgt. at his home June 28.

Fitzsimmons, a six year old student at Northwestern Elementary School was recently diagnosed with Hepatocellular Carcinoma, stage four in mid-May.

During the visit Fitzsimmons was given an ABU uniform. Chief Master Sgt. Scott McKenzie, 178th Wing Command Chief also presented him with a chief's coin and read him the chief's creed. He was also given numerous squadron coins, an honorary civil engineers maintenance badge and a photo of an MQ-1 Predator signed by members of the 178th Reconnaissance Group.

Since being diagnosed, Fitzsimmons has endured two rounds of chemotherapy and his numbers are encouraging. His third round of chemotherapy will begin this month.

178th Wing member, Tech. Sgt. Dallas Root organized this visit.

"I had the privilege to meet Barrett and coach him for his first year of pee-wee wresting this past winter," said Root, during wrestling season, I could see first-hand that he had the drive and will to fight. However, I never thought that this young man's drive and commitment to fight would have been put to the ultimate test."

The family is very grateful for the overwhelming support from Springfield and all over the world.

You can support Barrett by joining his public Facebook page "Barrett Strong."