Helms Moving Forward with Retirement Plans

Air Force Space Command boss Gen. William Shelton released a statement praising Lt. Gen. Susan Helms, commander of 14th Air Force, for the contributions she has made to the Air Force and the nation throughout her more than three decades of service. The statement followed a controversial vote by the Senate last week that made it more difficult for the minority party to hold up Presidential nominees (See above). “Lt. Gen. Susan Helms is a brilliant officer who has made contributions in so many areas. As a flight test engineer, astronaut, and space operations officer, she has left an indelible mark on the history of our nation,” wrote Shelton. “But even more important than her myriad accomplishments, she truly is a role model for all Americans.” Shelton said he will “miss her wise counsel.” President Obama withdrew his nomination of Helms to be Air Force Space Command’s next vice commander earlier this month after she announced her decision to retire. Her nomination had been in limbo following a hold placed by Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) who said she was concerned about Helms’ role in overturning a ruling in an Air Force sexual assault case. A retirement date yet to be set, according to the Air Force.