For retirees, by retirees

  • Published
  • By Airman Nathan H. Barbour
  • 355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
For some, serving 20 years in the military may be just the right amount of time necessary to achieve retirement and move on. Retired Senior Chief Petty Officer Allen Estes, D-M’s Retiree Activities Office manager, served his time in the U.S. Navy, but has decided that he still has more to give back to his military family.

“I had a good time in my Navy career,” Allen said. “I have time and I just feel like I should give back.”

Allen and his wife Barbara Estes, D-M’s RAO editor and receptionist, volunteer their time to ensure the information area of the RAO is staffed.

“We just point retirees in the right direction,” Allen said. “If they are having problems with their pay, or (if) their spouse (has) died and they need to know who to contact.”

Allen and Barbara met when they were stationed together in Guam. They worked in the same career field and have been married for 37 years.

“I was in telecommunications,” Allan said. “In the Navy they called it a radioman, it really changed a lot over the years. My first job was Morse code.”

In addition to volunteering as a receptionist, Barbara is also the editor of the RAO’s newsletter that is distributed by email every quarter. She separated from the Navy with an honorable discharge after serving six years.

The newsletter is a resource for local retirees and outlines community activities they might be interested in, as well as education opportunities and information on benefits programs.

There is an estimated 3,500 to 4,000 retirees currently living in the Tucson area but there is currently no means to contact them as a whole.

“I wish we could reach out to more retirees here, we do our newsletter, but we don’t have any additional way of finding retirees unless they come to us,” Allen said.

The RAO is located at 3500 S. Craycroft Rd., east of the base chapel. Their office hours are Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information, call 228-5100 or email them at