MSgt Travis Bolt wass active duty US Air Force, stationed at Ellsworth Air Force Base, when he first started coming to the Black Hills Veterans Writing Group. Deployed to the Middle East, he arrived in Qatar on January 17, 2010. He came back on July 28th, arriving at EAFB.
Bolt is keenly aware of the continuous bond between those currently serving and those who have gone before, the band-of-brothers theme writ a bit larger. At the Black Hills Veterans Writing Group, he likes the emphasis on learning about military history, as well as the atmosphere of upbeat patriotism that uniquely cuts across age groups (hence wars) and branches of service.
He has sent back regular reports and pictures recording his impressions of the Middle East military hot zone, with excerpts posted on this website.
Sergeant Bolt was born and raised near Corsica, South Dakota. After graduating high school he joined the Air Force on August 20, 1987. Following Basic Military Training he was selected as a Skill Specialty Munitions Systems Apprentice, often referred to as AMMO. His assignments took him from Hill Air Force Base in Utah, where he supported base units with their munitions requirements to the Morbach Munitions Depot in West Germany where he witnessed the fall of the “Iron Curtain” first-hand and the drastic changes in the political landscape that swept through Eastern and Western Europe in the early 90’s.
Assigned to a Munitions Depot in Desert Shield/Storm, Sergeant Bolt performed extended hours prepping and shipping thousands of tons of munitions for the war effort. His next move took him to Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Arizona where he supported the A-10 aircraft and HH-60 Rescue Squadron helicopters. After 10 years of being assigned to Davis-Monthan, he accepted a position with the 612th Air Support Squadron where he managed required munitions supporting actions with the “War on Drugs” in South and Central America.
Sergeant Bolt’s next assignment took him to a geographically separated unit at the southern tip of South Korea to the Gwang Ju Air Force Base where he maintained munitions stockpiles. His final assignment brought him here to the 28th Munitions Squadron at Ellsworth Air Force Base where he culminated his career as Systems Flight Chief. During his 24 years, Sergeant Bolt deployed 5 times and took part in numerous TDY’s supporting training and real world events. Sergeant Bolt continues to serve his community through many different organizations. He assists the non-profit Black Hills Veterans Writing Group by finding veterans who are willing to talk and write about each of their unique stories and is thrilled to be helping ensure a piece of history is being saved that would otherwise be lost.
Sergeant Bolt is also a member of the South Dakota Honor Flight and has coordinated fund raising events, helped with veteran applicants, created schedules, coordinated volunteers for departure and homecoming events, and helped coordinate the Finale Rapid City Honor Flight Event where Sergeant Bolt was honored to be the Emcee. Upon retirement from active duty, Sergeant Bolt decided to hold off before rejoining the work force and started volunteering at the Ellsworth Air Force Base Arts and Craft Center.
He assists the customers with their needs in selecting farewell, retirement, and specialty gifts. Sergeant Bolt’s volunteer efforts contributed to the Arts and Craft Center being awarded the 2012 Air Combat Command Arts and Crafts Program of the Year. Sergeant Bolt is a member of the American Legion, Air Force Sergeants Association and the Air Force Association and has been awarded many medals during his career including the Air Force Meritorious Service medal, National Defense Service Medal, and Military Outstanding Volunteer medal, just to name a few. Having served his country with pride, honor and dignity, Master Sergeant (Ret.)
Travis Bolt is a true patriot of the United States Air Force and is a true believer in the Air Force Core Values during active duty, in retirement, and also in his community. “Integrity First, Service Before Self, and Excellence in All You Do”. He is most deserving of the Veteran of the Month [November 2013]
Thanks to the Rapid City Council for this bio.
Travis Bolt recommends story of Boer War, WW1 and WW2 veteran who bit off his own fingers when doctors refused to ampute. more