• 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

  • Politics

    Citizen lobbyists frustrated by short-notice cancellation of session Thursday

    by Liz Raines on Apr 28, 21:04

    The Alaska House was supposed to take up an omnibus criminal justice reform bill, Senate Bill 91, in a floor session Thursday morning, but the meeting was cancelled with less than an hour’s notice. A House Majority Press Secretary said the latest version of the bill wasn’t finished being drafted after amendments were made in […]

  • News

    Construction worker remembered as one of dozens killed on the job in Alaska

    by Heather Hintze on Apr 28, 20:39

    More than two dozen workers in Alaska were killed on the job in 2015. On Thursday, people gathered at the Fallen Firefighters’ Memorial to honor those men and women for Workers Memorial Day. “All I can say is that I will never forget Samuel, and you and your family and I vow and our staff vows […]

  • News

    Citing dry conditions, AFD encourages free home inspection program

    by Eric Ruble on Apr 28, 20:24

    Captain Joe Albrecht has spent 38 years with the Anchorage Fire Department. He said this year’s fire danger is ”unprecedented,” especially on Anchorage’s hillside. “It’s a fact that sooner or later there’s going to be a large incident and there’s not much the Anchorage Fire Department is going to be able to do when it happens,” […]

  • Lifestyle

    Fewer U.S. teens are having babies; here’s why

    by CBS News on Apr 28, 18:39

    Birth rates among teens in the U.S. have dropped dramatically since 2006, according to a new report, and there are a lot of factors behind the trend, including a steep decline in births by black and Hispanic teens. Births to all American teenagers have plummeted by more than 40 percent, said Lisa Romero of the U.S. […]

  • Lifestyle

    Numbers don’t lie: Alaskans are crazy about their chickens

    by Carolyn Hall on Apr 28, 18:18

    A small tract of land can yield quite a crop for an ambitious backyard homesteader such as Mountain View resident Phil Cannon. His garden produces all the staples: carrots, potatoes, beets and lettuce. “We try to grow as much as we can for vegetables. This year we’re gonna let the kids grow their own sections […]

  • Politics

    Negotiators reach deal on excess power program earnings

    by Associated Press on Apr 28, 17:21

    JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) – House and Senate negotiators have reached agreement for use of any excess earnings from a fund set up to help rural areas faced with high electricity costs. A conference committee Thursday agreed to legislation that would allow for 70 percent of excess earnings from the Power Cost Equalization endowment fund to […]

  • On-Air

    Reality Check w/ John Tracy: Why the fiscal gap should be fixed now

    by John Tracy on Apr 28, 16:56

    Back in October, when I first began these commentaries, I said that lawmakers would be unlikely to levy an income tax, or use earnings from the Permanent Fund to help balance the budget. It didn’t take much of a crystal ball to make that prediction going into an election year, even though it was possible […]

  • Crime

    Anchorage man admits to stealing mail, credit cards from Hillside residents

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Apr 28, 16:01

    An Anchorage man pleaded guilty to charges of mail theft and credit card fraud in federal court Wednesday, according to a release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Evan Mullen, 28, admitted to stealing mail and packages from multiple homes in Anchorage’s Hillside neighborhood from December 2015 until his arrest in February 2016. His main target […]