• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
2m 6s

Tops in Blue performer comes home to JBER

By Bonney Bowman 6:09 PM August 11, 2014
ANCHORAGE –

Tops in Blue is an Air Force variety show. The performers are all active-duty airmen and they get to travel all over the world.

For one of them, taking the stage at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson is just like coming home.

Airman 1st Class Alexander Ross went from singing anthems on base to touring the world.

“I kind of grew up with my family as performers, so learning how to be a performer is a great experience and being able to serve my country at the same time, it’s just been an amazing experience,” Ross said.

The stage is a big change for the fuels specialist, who said being a part of the performance team is no easy assignment.

“It was almost like a second basic training. They had us working 18, 19 hours a day,” Ross said. “We had to learn how to set up an entire stage. We had to learn all of our choreography and songs and it was hard.”

Tops in Blue performers use their talent to raise morale all over the globe.

“You can’t help but be excited about it, about the places that we get to go and the people we get to meet and just the impact that we can have on our airmen and the community and their families all over the world,” said 1st Lt. Amanda Bills. “Every time at that patriotic set at the end and you see everyone standing up all over the world, it doesn’t matter where we are. It creates such a sense of unity.”

The team doesn’t just perform on stage. Getting out in the community is what makes the mission meaningful for him, Ross said.

“Every area that we visit we try to do a ‘give back,’ so whether that’s going to a local veteran’s hospital, or going to a retirement home or an elementary school and singing for the people there — that probably brings me the most joy,” Ross said.

As a member of the 673rd Logistical Readiness Squadron, Ross says landing on the flight line at JBER was like coming back to work.

“I felt like I had to throw on my uniform and go over to the fuel truck and just start pumping,” he said.

He says members of his unit are coming to the show, supporting him and welcoming him home.

Ross’s tour with Tops in Blue wraps up in January. He’ll then come back to JBER to resume his duties with the 673rd, fueling planes on the flight line.

Latest Stories

  • News

    Native art fair draws crowds to Dena’ina Center

    by Lauren Maxwell on Oct 23, 22:27

    The Alaska Federation of Natives convention brings Alaska Native leaders from around the state, but it also brings crafters and artisans. For many people, the Alaska Native Customary Art Fair is one of their favorite parts of the AFN convention. This year, the selection is better than ever. Hundreds of booths line the first floor […]

  • Weather

    Evening News weather, Oct. 23

    by Carlos Faura on Oct 23, 22:22

    Kenai Peninsula – There will be isolated rain and snow on the Kenai with scattered showers from Anchorage north. Southeast - Expect rain to the south and a shower or two for the northern areas, with snow at pass levels. Interior & North Slope – It will be mostly dry with a flurry or two, […]

  • News

    Totem pole artist carves out a piece of history

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 23, 21:28

    A totem pole isn’t just a work of art for Tommy Joseph; it’s carving out a little piece of history. “That’s what a totem pole is all about is I’m telling someone’s story,” he said. “Everyone has a story.” On a warm morning in Sitka, he methodically chips away at a 10-foot cedar pole. He […]

  • Politics

    Show Me the Money: Marijuana Legalization

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Oct 23, 21:00

      Show Me the Money: Alaska’s Fiscal Future Four issues that could change the fortunes of Alaska… Four issues that have divided us… Four issues that will unite us as we go to the polls Nov. 4th… How can you prosper in the ever-changing landscape of living life in the 49th state?   Oct. 9 @ 9 […]

  • News

    Investigators focus on pilot error in deadly 2013 plane crash

    by Dave Leval on Oct 23, 20:22

    It’s been more than a year since two people died in a plane crash at Merrill Field. Rob Lilly and his girlfriend, Jessi Nelsen, died when they tried to land after taking off from Wasilla Aug. 24, 2013. The second phase of a federal investigation into the crash found no mechanical errors with the plane. […]

  • News

    Feds to bring indoor plumbing to Alaska village

    by Associated Press on Oct 23, 15:49

    A remote Alaska village where only half the homes have indoor plumbing is among rural communities nationwide to receive a share of more than $352 million in grants and loans for upgrades to rural water and wastewater systems. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced Alaska’s $12.6 million share of the funding from the U.S. Department of […]

  • News

    Governor signs bill to recognize Native languages

    by Lauren Maxwell on Oct 23, 15:39

    The number of official languages in the State of Alaska has gone from one to 21 with a single stroke of a pen. Gov. Sean Parnell signed HB216 in front of a cheering crowd at the Alaska Federation of Natives convention Thursday morning. The bill recognizes 20 Native languages, and adds them to English as […]

  • Crime

    Police: Pit bull death ‘extreme’ animal cruelty

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Oct 23, 15:17

    Police are asking for help investigating the death of a dog found hanging from a tree near the University of Alaska Anchorage earlier this month. A man walking in the woods near East 20th Avenue and Rosemary Street made the gruesome discovery Oct. 10, according to a Thursday afternoon statement from the Anchorage Police Department. […]