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Wichita's McConnell base wins $500K

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) -- McConnell Air Force Base in Wichita is getting a $500,000 award from the Defense Department.

The Wichita Eagle reports (http://bit.ly/10PU8Z3 ) that McConnell gets the money for finishing as a runner up for a national honor awarded annually to U.S military installations.

Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Miss., won the Air Force category and will receive $1?million. McConnell and Keesler were the two finalists out of 166 bases considered for the 2012 Commander-in-Chief's Installation Excellence Award.

McConnell spokesman Stefan Bocchino says the money has to go toward improving the quality of life of airmen and their families, and could include such things as upgrading dormitories or recreational facilities.