The violence on military bases over the years has leaders at Gowen Field stepping-up security.
The base says it is prepared in the event of tragedy. Gowen Field leaders call the tragedy at Fort Hood devastating. And while they hope nothing like this ever happens here --- they say they are prepared.
"We have an active shooter on Ft. Hood. We have multiple victims," came a frantic call from the base this week. The calls for help are becoming all too common. Two shootings at the fort hood military base in five years. "These attacks on our military installations are just extremely disturbing," said Col. Tim Marsano with Gowen Field.
1,500 miles Northwest of Texas, soldiers at Gowen Field are on alert following the shooting. They're prepared in the event something happens here. "We are doing everything that we can to ensure that our personally are kept secure," said Col. Marsano. He says that over the last several years security has increased at Gowen.
"We have both physical and electronical means of ensuring that are personal are kept as secure as possible. Those measures are in place today," Marsano said. He says hecan't go into specifics, but says every threat is taken seriously.
"There have been times that personal have been on base that we have been concerned about and we go into lockdown mode if that is the case," Marsano said. While the specifics of those cases aren't known, what is known is that the Fort Hood shooter brought a personal gun on base. According to the military, it wasn't registered with the base. Colonel Marsano says personal guns on bases are not allowed, but enforcing the policy can be difficult. "It really is not possible to make sure every single one of the people is complying with the bases' directive to not bring a personal weapon on the base," he said.
The concern over safety on military bases is real. In September of last year -- Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel said the Department of Defense lacks ability to prevent someone in the military or working for the government from causing harm on bases. He says his office was working to bridge those gaps.