Continuing the Legacy: 28th TES names test facility after beloved Air Force member

  • Published
  • By 1st Lt Lindsey Heflin
  • 53rd Wing
In early June the 28th Test and Evaluation Squadron held a ceremony to dedicate the Dynamic Entry and Exit Test Module (DEETM) test facility in honor of Scott A. Matheson, an invaluable member of their team.

Following in the footsteps of his father, Matheson enlisted into the Air Force during the Vietnam conflict in 1968. With a career centering on disaster preparedness, it was of the utmost importance to Matheson to make sure the men and women fighting in future conflicts were protected.

“Scott not only chose to live in this world, he mastered it. He had a wealth of knowledge deriving from Vietnam onward that he was able to pass down to all of us,” said Joel Huddleston, 28th TES deputy division chief. “He always made sure that we knew what we were doing, why we were doing it, and what the warfighter got out of it.”

Matheson’s vision included getting buy in from every member of the team; he wanted to make sure there was never one single point of failure. He encouraged collaboration and was credited for bridging the gap between contractors and military personnel. Matheson was also a pivotal part of creating the DEETM facility.

The DEETM facility houses a full-spectrum of chemical and biological simulant test equipment in a controlled, operationally relevant environment. Man in Simulant Test (MIST) is a new, customizable capability of the facility that provides a test environment for individual chemical protective equipment like suits, gloves, and masks. 

 This building will soon be the only validated and verified MIST facility in the Department of Defense. The 28th TES can replicate a wide range of conditions in the MIST facility, including chemical concentrations, temperature, and humidity. This level of control enables them to set the perfect environment for exposing protective equipment to simulated toxins and agents.

“In short, they are able to transform the inside of the MIST into one of the worst places on earth in order to test the DoD’s best protection methods,” said Lt. Col. James Divine, 28th TES commander.

No one contributed more to the mission than Scott Matheson, but his focus was on more than just the facility, it was on shaping the culture within the 28th TES and caring for the people.

The lessons Matheson taught his people over more than 52 years of combined Active Duty and government civilian service continue to live on.  

“For him it was family, not just us,” said Mr. John Terry, 28th TES/D0U contractor support task leader. “His ultimate goal was to protect every warfighter out there, regardless of service, from the lowest ranking Airman to the highest ranking general. That’s Scott’s legacy.”
For more information, contact 1st Lt Lindsey Heflin, Public Affairs Advisor for the 53rd Wing at 850-598-3283 or
The 53rd Wing provides tactical advantage to the warfighter at the speed of relevance. By testing new operational capabilities and evaluating fielded capabilities, the 53rd Wing is bringing the future faster while answering the warfighter’s demands for integrated, multi-domain capabilities.  

(courtesy photo)