Master Sgt. Brian Sharkey

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Master Sgt. Brian Sharkey is an aircrew flight equipment NCO in charge with the 514th Flight Test Squadron at Hill Air Force Base, Utah. He's responsible for managing personnel, training and quality control over an AFE flight that ensures gear safety for pilots of five different aircraft.

Sharkey's military career begin in 1995, with him serving in the active-duty Air Force for four years. He then became an air reserve technician for eight years before coming on board with the 514th FLTS in 2008. He has four children, one of which who recently followed in his footsteps.

Sharkey's second oldest child, 20-year-old Airman 1st Class Mercadie Sharkey, joined the Air Force in July of last year and is currently a security forces member at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany. The 23-year veteran said their commonality allows them to bond, with them often talking about everything from dealing with dorm life to the ins and outs of career progression.

"I'm very proud of her," he said. "I don’t think I could be more proud of her, honestly. Not only has she chosen the path of the military, she's also a go-getter … she’s a fast burner."

Sharkey said Mercadie will soon qualify for a Senior Airman Below-the-Zone promotion, and he likes her chances, due to all the hard work she's put into her career so far. He also admitted that having a child serving in the Air Force at the same time as him makes him feel old, but it’s something neither of them have regretted.

"I'm glad that she did [join], and I know she wouldn't have it any other way," he said. "I think joining the military is probably a good choice for almost every kid … if you want to make it a career, great, and if not, you at least have a skillset and you can go from there."