LITTLE ROCK AIR FORCE BASE, Ark., Dec. 7, 2017 — Mentors come in many forms. And, whether they’re coworkers, supervisors or even friends, they provide personal and professional advice that can impact someone for the rest of their lives.
Air Force Airman Trevor Armentrout, a loadmaster, often receives guidance from one of his mentors: his father, Air Force Col. Jeffrey Armentrout, 302nd Airlift Wing vice commander.
Father and son were recently assigned as students at the 714th Training Squadron here to attend the C-130 Center of Excellence. Jeffery trained to become a C-130H3 Hercules pilot for the Air Force Reserve’s 302nd Airlift Wing at Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado. His son trained as a loadmaster and is serving in the Air Force Reserve’s 700th Airlift Squadron at Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Georgia, while studying at Kennesaw State University, Georgia.
“[Being at the schoolhouse] was a treat for me and his mother,” Jeffery said. “We enjoyed some fun recreational excursions together and caught up with Trevor on all his Air Force training experiences.”
Before attending the technical school, the senior Armentrout spent 10 years on active duty as a C-5 Galaxy pilot. In 2000, he transitioned to the Air Force Reserve.
“In the reserve I’ve had to spend a lot of time away from my family,” he said. “Every month, I had to leave the house and disappear somewhere for a few days. When I was home, I focused on the things we could do together when we had the time. Both my boys were in the Boy Scouts, so I invested a lot of time doing that with them. I have the fondest memories of those experiences.”
It was during those times together that Jeffery passed down family values to his son.
“He gave me a good life and I want to provide that for my children, someday,” Trevor said of his father. “He raised me to want to be willing to help others. My father also made sure I knew I had to earn my way in life, so I want my children to know that too.”
In addition to helping others and working hard, Trevor said he felt the need to serve his country.
“Since my dad served in the Air Force, I thought I would serve my country too, but not in the same way he did,” he said. “And then I thought, ‘Why not go to school and join the military?’”
“When my son brought up the idea of joining the Air Force, he also indicated he wanted to go to school, so I suggested the reserve,” Jeffery said.
Trevor eventually joined the Air Force Reserve. Now that he has had some time in the Air Force, he respects and understands what his father does even more.
“Whether he saw it or not, I always thought his job was important,” Trevor said. “I always understood that, but going into the Air Force gave me an understanding of all he does. I understood why he would have to leave every so often because he was supporting us and our country.”
“[His mother and I] are proud of his decision to serve,” Jeffery said of his son. “The Air Force has been a big part of our life and I know he will benefit from the experience. I’m hopeful that the Air Force chief of staff focus on revitalizing the squadron will improve Trevor’s overall experience so that he continues a long and rewarding career.”