Meet the Commander - Lt. Col. Jason Costello
By 2nd Lt. Andrea Valencia, 325th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
/ Published June 05, 2012
Tyndall Air Force Base -- The desire to follow in his grandfather's footsteps led this Airman down a path to the Air Force and a career as a fighter pilot.
"I always wanted to be an astronaut when I was young, and if that didn't work out then this thing called 'being a fighter pilot' seemed pretty cool," said Lieutenant Col. Jason Costello, 325th Training Support Squadron commander. "I wanted to fly, be up in the air, the higher the better, so being in space would have been great, but my grandfather was a fighter pilot in the Air Force for almost 30 years, and he was my hero. I definitely wanted to grow up to emulate him."
"Getting a chance to see what my grandfather did in his career it certainly appealed to me to be flying, to be a fighter pilot on the leading edge of warfare," said Col. Costello. "He was one of the most professional and honorable men I have ever met."
Colonel Costello graduated from the United States Air Force Academy in 1995 and attended pilot training at Reese Air Force Base, Texas. He served at Kadena Air Base, Japan, Fort Carson, Colo., Langley Air Force Base, Va. and the Pentagon. However, his favorite assignment to date is Tyndall Air Force Base.
Colonel Costello assumed command of the 325th TRSS May 4. He previously served as the 325th Fighter Wing Chief of Safety and 325th TRSS Director of Operations.
"My proudest moment to date has been the opportunity to take command of this squadron," said Col. Costello. "I've always wanted the opportunity to serve my country and lead warriors and that's exactly what I have the opportunity to do now."
Colonel Costello's goals are to remain focused on his next two years as commander and F-22 instructor and lead the squadron toward a future of continued achievement in a future marked by fiscal austerity.
"We want to continue to do the amazing work this squadron is doing to produce tomorrow's air dominance warriors and add to our portfolio the F-22 support mission of T-38 adversary air," said Col. Costello. "We will continue to grow our capability at Tyndall to be a virtual training center making a difference in the Air Force."
His advice to his new Airmen is to focus on the importance of serving our nation and stay true to the Air Force Core Values.
"We are here to serve our nation and every day we need to earn the privilege of wearing this uniform. We demonstrate this with the level of exertion and effort we give to our job, the level of sacrifice we are willing to give. Knowing the mission we're trying to achieve is worth the cost personally to achieve this professional goal," said Col. Costello. "Stay true to the Air Force Core Values because you'll never go wrong when you care about selflessness and service, integrity and excellence. It boils down to those being the core components of a successful character."
He dedicates his time outside of work to his two loves: spending time with his wife, daughter and two young sons and doing outdoor activities.
"They can both be combined at the same time at Tyndall," said Col. Costello. "There's many outdoor activities to do here as a family: whether it's just hanging around the beach or cruising around the lake or fishing or just having a good time."