The Bay Orderlies: Air Force grime-fighters

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Vernon L. Fowler Jr.
  • 6th Air Mobility Wing public affairs
With the quick swipe of a rag and the brisk push of a broom the bay orderlies have once again thwarted the daily threat of dirt and grime.

Who are these selfless Airmen you may ask? And why are they here?

Every week four junior-enlisted Airmen living in the base dormitories on MacDill Air Force Base, Florida, are selected to participate in bay orderly. Monday through Friday they are given the responsibility of maintaining the cleanliness of the areas surrounding the dormitories, its facilities, escorting contracted workers, and completing any other miscellaneous projects given to them.

"There are five buildings in our inventory that the Airmen are responsible for," said Master Sgt. Patrick McSweeney, 6th Civil Engineer Squadron Unaccompanied Housing superintendent. "These Airmen act as my eyes and ears around the dormitories."

These five dormitories, 253; 370; 375; 376; and 377, together amount to approximately $42 million in value. It is crucial that the bay orderlies utilize the core values and always do their best work because it reflects on the 6th Air Mobility Wing, its personnel, and all the other units on the installation.

"They help us with various projects during the year which allows us to complete more tasks," said McSweeney. "The work is constant and ongoing. They do lots of work and that makes them the backbone of the dorms."

Despite being behind the scenes, these Airmen play a very important role. There are many tasks the bay orderlies assist with that many people are unaware of. Tasks such as ensuring all the dorm residents have shelter-in-place kits in their rooms, employing the new Enterprise Military Housing system to track residents checking in/out and furniture, and preparing the now returning first sergeants' rooms.

According to McSweeney, however, that is not the biggest benefit of having the bay orderlies.

"For me it's the one on one time," said McSweeney. "When they report here I really get a chance to interact with them and that's the best thing."

So if you're ever around the dormitories, be aware because the bay orderlies are somewhere nearby fighting grime.