An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

HomeNewsArticle Display

Goodbye Ms. Emilie: retired but not forgotten

Emilie Acklen, former Vandenberg AFB housekeeping room attendant, shakes the hand of Col. Benjamin Huff, 30th Mission Support Group commander, at her retirement ceremony here on Oct. 19. Ms. Acklen has been a room attendant at Vandenberg since 1969.

Emilie Acklen, former Vandenberg AFB housekeeping room attendant, shakes the hand of Col. Benjamin Huff, 30th Mission Support Group commander, at her retirement ceremony here on Oct. 19. Ms. Acklen has been a room attendant at Vandenberg since 1969.

Emilie Acklen, former Vandenberg AFB housekeeping room attendant, talks with Col. Benjamin Huff, 30th Mission Support Group commander, at her retirement ceremony here on Oct. 19. Ms. Acklen has been a room attendant at Vandenberg since 1969.

Emilie Acklen, former Vandenberg AFB housekeeping room attendant, talks with Col. Benjamin Huff, 30th Mission Support Group commander, at her retirement ceremony here on Oct. 19. Ms. Acklen has been a room attendant at Vandenberg since 1969.

Emilie Acklen, former Vandenberg AFB housekeeping room attendant, recieves the applause of Col. Benjamin Huff, 30th Mission Support Group commander, and other 30th MSG members, at her retirement ceremony here on Oct. 19. Ms. Acklen has been a room attendant at Vandenberg since 1969.

Emilie Acklen, former Vandenberg AFB housekeeping room attendant, recieves the applause of Col. Benjamin Huff, 30th Mission Support Group commander, and other 30th MSG members, at her retirement ceremony here on Oct. 19. Ms. Acklen has been a room attendant at Vandenberg since 1969.

Emilie Acklen, former Vandenberg AFB housekeeping room attendant, shares a laugh with co-worker, Michael Szymanski, 30th Space Wing Services director, at her retirement ceremony here on Oct. 19. Ms. Acklen has been a room attendant at Vandenberg since 1969.

Emilie Acklen, former Vandenberg AFB housekeeping room attendant, shares a laugh with co-worker, Michael Szymanski, 30th Space Wing Services director, at her retirement ceremony here on Oct. 19. Ms. Acklen has been a room attendant at Vandenberg since 1969.

Emilie Acklen, former Vandenberg AFB housekeeping room attendant, reads a retirement card at her retirement ceremony here on Oct. 19. Ms. Acklen has been a room attendant at Vandenberg since 1969.

Emilie Acklen, former Vandenberg AFB housekeeping room attendant, reads a retirement card at her retirement ceremony here on Oct. 19. Ms. Acklen has been a room attendant at Vandenberg since 1969.

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- Not many Vandenberg room attendants were around to see what Vandenberg visitors quarters looked like in 1967 also, even fewer were room attendants at that time.

Emilie Acklen, 83, former Vandenberg room attendant, not only remembers what Vandenberg's VQ looked like but was here, working at that time.

"We didn't have nice furniture like this," said Ms. Acklen, to a room filled with over 40 Vandenberg active duty members and civilian employees. "I remember lodging in 1969 when we used to have bunk beds, four to a room, and I would have to climb to change the top bunk!"

Ms. Acklen no longer has to change bunk beds or clean the 1,000 rooms housekeeping was responsible for in 1969, she resigned Oct. 19 after 38 years of service.

Her many years of service have not gone unnoticed.

On Oct. 19, many of Vandenberg's housekeeping personnel, 30th Space Wing Services members as well as 30th Mission Support Squadron leadership consider Ms. Acklen a living Vandenberg legend and gathered at housekeeping headquarters to celebrate Ms. Acklen's career.

"It is superstars like Ms. Acklen who make Vandenberg the number one choice for lodging in Air Force Space Command." said Col. Benjamin Huff, 30th Mission Support Group commander

Colonel Huff went on to say that many times before distinguished visitor visits, he made it a habit to walk around the VQ.

"The level of detail and care was unimaginable," Colonel Huff said. "There were many times when there would be something small wrong with a distinguished visitor's VQ and she would take it into her own hands to make sure it was fixed."

Ms. Acklen was always working behind the scenes to make sure that every visit, every evaluation, went perfectly, said Colonel Huff.

To celebrate Ms. Acklen and thank her for her many years of service to Vandenberg, she received a commander's coin from Colonel Huff as well as a certificate of service from Col. Steve Tanous, 30th Space Wing commander.

In a certificate of service written by Colonel Tanous, Colonel Huff read, "We will not forget you and may God bless you for years to come."

To commemorate Ms. Acklen's 38 years of service, the 30th Space Wing has decided to rename Vandenberg's housekeeping headquarters after Ms. Acklen.

There is at least one person who has been there, working next to Ms. Acklen, the whole time and understands her level of dedication.

Mary Llyod, a Vandenberg room attendant since 1967, has been working with Ms. Acklen for 38 years.

"Emilie deserves to have Vandenberg's housekeeping headquarters named after her," said Ms. Llyod. "I feel great about this and she is a wonderful person."

Those that have been working with Ms. Acklen far less agree with Ms.Llyod and regret her absence.

"Vandenberg has won the Air Force Innkeeper Award for two years in a row and it is attention to detail like that of Ms. Acklen that makes that happen," said Colonel Huff. "It is a privilege for me to be standing here with a living Vandenberg housekeeping legend, who will be missed."