Big DAN on Campus
By Staff Sgt. K.L. Kimbrell, 931st ARG Public Affairs
/ Published November 14, 2006
MCCONNELL AFB, Kan. -- There's a 6 foot tall, 205 pound defensive monster roaming the halls of the 931st Air Refueling Group.
You don't have to fear for your life though, Friends University safety Dan Kontz, son of Lt. Col. Keith Kontz, the 931st ARG Chief of Standardization and Evaluation, isn't here to terrorize our offense and special teams. He's here to help with routine maintenance and grounds beautification.
Dan has been employed on McConnell Air Force Base for more than three years.
"I began working on McConnell as a Summer Hire in June of 2003," said Kontz. "I started out working for the 22nd Services Squadron in Emerald City (Robert J. Dole Community Center) and in November of 2003 I transferred over to work for Outdoor Recreation."
Late in 2004, Dan began working for the 931st ARG.
"By the time he came to our unit he had worked on base over a year and was very familiar with doing things the military way and knew many of our unit members," said Lt. Col. Kontz. "Dan is pretty outgoing so at times when we go to lunch together on base I am always amazed how many people he knows."
Dan seems to enjoy his time here on the base.
"Working on McConnell has been an absolutely great experience. I truly feel as though I have the best job a college kid could ask for," said Kontz.
Dan has been on the football field for about a decade.
"I began playing football in Derby, Kan. during my 7th grade year and continued playing at Derby High School followed by Friends University," said Kontz. "This is my 10th football season."
His father claims to be his biggest fan, but also proclaims that "Mom" isn't too far behind.
"I would have to say I am, but his mother seldom misses a game either," said Lt. Col. Kontz.
According to his father, Dan possesses both life and football qualities.
"It is his dedication and commitment to everything he does, the respect he shows to every person he interacts with and always leading by example," said Lt. Col. Kontz.
Recently, Dan decided to bring his two worlds together.
Dan helped Friends University in Wichita, Kan. host a military appreciation night, at which anyone presenting a military identification card was granted free admission.
The McConnell, AFB Honor Guard posted the colors during the pre-game festivities and Col. Clayton Childs, 931st ARG Commander, flipped the coin for the event.
After the event, and overall, everyone seems to be happy with Dan's performance, in football and in life as a son, student-athlete and person.
"The Military Appreciation event here at Friends University was very successful due to the efforts and initiative of senior Dan Kontz.
Dan's leadership both on the field and off is evident by his desire to have military personnel recognized for their work and efforts on behalf of our nation," said Joe Zimmerman, Friends University Athletic Director. "I learned even more about Dan in that his "team first" attitude goes above what transpires on the field or in the classroom. He genuinely cares about people and I believe the success of the military appreciation day was in large part because Dan is a leader and has great ability to pull people together towards a common goal."
Dan's parents echoed similar sentiments.
"As parents we are very proud of Dan and the way he conducts himself and his accomplishments on and off the field," said Lt. Col. Kontz.