Family able to witness soldier's big day from afar

Nashua native Ryan Robinson couldn’t be with his family for his recent promotion to Air Force major because he’s serving in Iraq.

So the Air Force arranged for him to receive his gold leaf pin in front of a television camera. The video feed from an Iraqi base was broadcast Dec. 30 to Hanscom Air Force Base in Massachusetts, where it was watched by Robinson’s parents, Edward and Virginia, along with his sister Shelley and her fiance, Corey Vessels.

“It was just awesome,” said Robinson, who was promoted from captain. “For the first

time in my Air Force career, my family was able to share this special moment with me. It was almost like having them there with me.”

Robinson is communications systems chief for multinational forces in Iraq Combined Joined Intelligence. He’s based at Keesler Air Force Base in Mississippi, and is assigned to the 336th Training Squadron.