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Published March 21, 2013, 03:26 PM

Air Force Wing Commander "Blessed" with 25 Years of Service, Despite Removal

An update to a story we broke last night -- Colonel Tim Bush, a highly respected Grand Forks Air Base Wing commander, has been relieved of his duties because his waistline is too big.

An update to a story we broke last night -- Colonel Tim Bush, a highly respected Grand Forks Air Base Wing commander, has been relieved of his duties because his waistline is too big.

The Colonel exceeded the Air Force's maximum waist measurement of 39 inches for men by just inches. The controversial Air Force fitness standards require all airmen to meet requirements for pushups, situps, distance running and waistlines. Bush is 47 years old, 6-feet-1 inch and 227 pounds. Bush has been on active duty in the Air Force for 25 years. His removal marks the first time a wing commander has been relieved of command for fitness standards in the Air Mobility Command, which comprises 16 air wings and groups.

Colonel Bush says he isn't bitter about his release at all. He told us when you don't meet the physical requirements, you shouldn't be a commander anymore. But, many say the Air Force fitness standards are controversial and don't reflect an accurate representation of one's fitness. The waistline portion of the requirements accounts for 20 percent of the score but not meeting just one requirement results in a failing mark. Bush says the Air Force has been a dream come true, and he bleeds blue.

Bush: "I love the air force, let me start off by saying that, the air force is what I've wanted to do, so I lived my boyhood dream. I've been blessed for 25 years to be able to wear the uniform."

The base declined an on-camera interview, and Bush says his remarks do not represent the Air Force but his own personal opinions. We will have more on news at ten.

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