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Posted: 10/6/2004 9:34:58 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/6/2004 9:35:45 AM EST by KA3B]
27th FS becomes F/A-22 squadron today
By 1st Lt. Tina Carlsen
1st Fighter Wing Public Affairs

The 27th Fighter Squadron makes history again today when it becomes an F/A-22 operational squadron following a change of command.

Lt. Col. James Hecker will take command of the squadron from Lt. Col. Stuart Nichols at a 4:27 p.m. ceremony.

As one of the oldest fighter squadrons in the Air Force, the 27th has a history of firsts - in 1976 it was the first Air Force squadron to fly the F-15 operationally, and now it will be home to the Air Force’s newest fighter.

With the integration of the F/A-22 into Langley’s inventory, the 1st FW becomes a composite wing.

To make the transition, the 27th physically moved to its new location in the operations/aircraft maintenance unit F/A-22 hangar.

The squadron’s F-15s and the majority of the pilots and maintainers now belong to the 94th and 71st FS. In September, two F-15s departed Langley for the last time heading to an Air National Guard unit in St. Louis, Mo. Langley is scheduled to lose two F-15s per month in preparation for the F/A-22’s arrival.

An F/A-22 that will be used for maintenance training will arrive in November from Edwards AFB, Calif. The 1st Fighter Wing is scheduled to get an F/A-22 in January from Tyndall AFB, Fla., and another in March. Langley’s first F/A-22 is scheduled to arrive in May.

The 27th FS will get 24 primary assigned F/A-22s. Once the 27th has its full compliment of aircraft, the 94th FS will transition to F/A-22s. The last to transition will be the 71st FS.

Four pilots from Langley have been selected to fly the F/A-22. Colonel Hecker begins four-months of training in November at Tyndall AFB. Lt. Col. Wade Tolliver, who will be the 27th FS Director of Operations, will go to training in January. Capts. John Echols and Michael Schaner will go in March.

Sixteen Langley maintainers completed the common course taught here - the first step for the maintainer’s conversion to the F/A-22. Three classes of about seven people each are scheduled to attend in October.

With the change of the 27th FS’s mission, it will allow them to focus on preparations for F/A-22, said Colonel Hecker. Preparations include organizing a FCIF library and training regulations, creating a syllabus, and figuring out all of the deployment details, such as how many people and parts will be needed on a deployment.

“Tyndall has done the flying operation part of it, so we can learn a lot from them on that aspect, but they don’t have to deploy. We are operational, so we deploy,” Colonel Hecker said.

“I feel very fortunate having been selected as the commander of the squadron. The timing worked out in my favor. It’s an honor. It’s sad to leave the F-15 after flying it for so long, but I’m excited about flying the F/A-22,” Colonel Hecker said.

The 27th is scheduled to be at Initial Operational Capability in December 2005. That’s when the squadron will have enough aircraft and will be able to deploy and fight.

“The F/A-22 is the United States’ premier air superiority fighter designed to counter lethal threats posed by advanced surface-to-air missile systems and next-generation fighters equipped with launch-and-leave missile capability,” Colonel Hecker said.

http://www.militarynews.com/flyer/news1.html#news01
Link Posted: 10/6/2004 5:46:37 PM EST
bump
Link Posted: 10/6/2004 5:49:22 PM EST
Outstanding


Link Posted: 10/7/2004 1:48:51 AM EST
Excellent,

I doubt we have anything major scheduled before May.
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 2:06:14 AM EST
The new, improved flying tennis court.
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 2:16:34 AM EST
This is excellent news.
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 2:39:51 AM EST
Just in time for Kerry to hand them over to the UN
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 3:16:37 AM EST
I am proud we had important part in the evaluation of the sites for the F22 hangers. The upgrades that both storm and sanitary sewer needed were based largely on the data my crews gathered over several year long projects at langley.



Link Posted: 10/7/2004 3:24:23 AM EST
It will be a sad day when all the F-15's are gone.
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 3:39:42 AM EST
Looks like it'll be time to call in some favors at Langley next month so I can get out on the ramp and check that bitch out.
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 3:44:35 AM EST

Originally Posted By cwd10:
It will be a sad day when all the F-15's are gone.



Thats going to be a LOONG ways away.

There are not enough F-22s on order to give to the ANG, there is no replacement for the F-15E even in the planning stages. (Although the Bombers may have reclaimed that role in the long run). Maybe the ANG will get F-35's to replace there Eagles sometime in the 2020's.
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 3:53:25 AM EST
Langley's approach path is almost directly over my house.

I cannot wait till the 22's begin routinely flying overhead. Planes returning to Langley are probably at 150 feet as they pass over my house.

There must be a big ceremony at Langley todal as all sorts of planes that are not based at Langley have been coming in the past couple of days. A-10, B1B, F-117 etc.
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 3:55:03 AM EST
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 3:59:19 AM EST

Originally Posted By bvmjethead:
Langley's approach path is almost directly over my house.

I cannot wait till the 22's begin routinely flying overhead. Planes returning to Langley are probably at 150 feet as they pass over my house.

There must be a big ceremony at Langley todal as all sorts of planes that are not based at Langley have been coming in the past couple of days. A-10, B1B, F-117 etc.



Isn't this the weekend of the Neptune festival and Oceana airshow?
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 4:35:59 AM EST
Excellent! I will be happy when we get a significant number of these into service. You just never know when something big might break and it would nice to have some of these around. I just wish we could bump the total order up to 600 or so, from the 339 we are scheduled to purchase as of now.
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