Salutes & Awards

September 21, 2012

62nd FS graduates 7 in class 12-BBC

America’s newest fighter pilots are ready to join the most lethal Combat Air Force on the planet. Seven officers from class 12-BBC successfully completed the F-16 basic course and will celebrate this momentous accomplishment today with their families, friends, academic instructors and instructor pilots from the 62nd Fighter Squadron.

Class 12-BB’s stay at Luke began approximately nine months ago with an intense academic phase that consisted of 236 hours of academic instruction punctuated by evaluations in the form of 10 exams. In addition to the academics, these students were evaluated during 42 simulator missions at Luke Air Force Base totaling 58 hours. Though concentrated in the initial phase of the course, much of the academic instruction and simulator training was interspersed with flying training during the second phase of the B-Course.

Following the initial phase, these seven pilots moved from the 56th Training Squadron to the 62nd Fighter Squadron to fulfill a lifelong dream … strapping a mighty Viper to their backs to slip the surly bonds. The joy of this accomplishment was surely short lived as Spike instructors immediately began pushing them to their limits to learn more and execute to a higher standard with every sortie. The proverbial “firehose” became a way of life.

Flying training started with the transition phase where the class was taught to fly the F-16 in accordance with Air Force Instructions, Federal Aviation Administration guidance and instrument procedures. The initial sorties consisted of instructors flying in the rear cockpit until each student proved ready to fly the F-16 solo.

Following the TR phase, the student pilots were introduced to one vs. one dog fighting to learn dynamic maneuvering under high G-force while reacting to an adversary maneuvering in close proximity to their aircraft. Once proficient in basic 1one vs. one, they progressed to two vs. one, two vs. two and eventually four vs. four air combat tactics missions where they executed real world tactics against adversaries with the fights starting with more than a 50-mile separation between the blue and red forces.

Upon reaching basic proficiency in all facets of air-to-air F-16 employment, they were immediately challenged with a completely new skill set to master with the progression to air-to-ground missions. Again, these started with basic sorties where they were instructed on the employment of unguided bombs on the various ranges that make up the Barry M. Goldwater Range complex. Then the young pilots were introduced to the munitions they will soon employ in combat to include laser guided bombs and GPS guided bombs. While most missions consisted of simulated employment, each student had the opportunity to employ live bombs, actual LGBs and joint direct attack munitions.

Upon demonstrating proficiency with weapons employment, 12-BBC progressed into the close air support and then surface attack tactics phase where they flew in forces of four to eight aircraft in missionized scenarios that most closely replicated the types of missions they may be called on to execute someday in combat.

After completing all these phases, class 12-BBC was presented one final challenge in the form of a graduation exercise called Operation BEGIN COMPLIANCE. This exercise consisted of an AOR-representative Air Tasking Order and mission planning process that culminated in a complex force on force mission consisting of more than 20 blue fighters simultaneously attacking targets defended by simulated surface-to-air missiles and actual adversaries from Luke and Marine Corps Air Station Yuma simulating hostile fighters. In total, members of class 12-BBC completed 62 syllabus directed missions totaling approximately 100 flight hours in the F-16.

While the effort and perseverance required to graduate was all theirs, class 12-BBC’s graduation would not have been possible without the tremendous joint effort put forth by Team Luke. From the military personnel flight, transportation management office, and the comptroller squadron to the aerospace medicine squadron, training squadron, operations support squadron and many more, there isn’t a single individual at Luke who belongs to an organization that did not somehow contribute to the successful addition of seven motivated new fighter pilots to the Air Force. In particular, the men and women of the Spike aircraft maintenance unit moved mountains to keep the oldest F-16s in the Air Force flying and able to provide superior training to these young aviators. Along with the amazing maintainers, BBC’s graduation was made possible thanks to the superb instruction provided by the pilots who pushed, cajoled, motivated, challenged and sometimes kicked in the rear Spike instructor pilots.

The seven young men of class 12-BBC endured a rigorous selection process that began at their commissioning sources, continued through undergraduate pilot training and introduction to fighter fundamentals, and culminated with graduation from the B-Course and the right to call themselves fighter pilots. The mental and physical stamina and aptitude displayed throughout this demanding course will serve as the foundation on which these pilots will rely as they go on to operational combat units throughout the Air Force. While their training at Luke is complete, they will have many more mountains to climb and qualifications to earn. Many of these new fighter pilots will fly combat missions in less time than it took to complete the Basic Course. Congratulations 12- BBC. Thank you Team Luke. 357 AND COUNTING …

SPIKE!

For a complete list of the seven graduates, please refer to this week’s PDF file.

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Staff Sgt. 
STACI MILLER

CMS aircraft fuel systems provides push for pilot

Staff Sgt.STACI MILLER Airman 1st Class Gary Esposito, 56th Component Maintenance Squadron aircraft fuel systems apprentice, prepares to inspect a 370-gallon external fuel tank on Luke Air Force Base. Esposito inspected the tan...
 
 
Senior Airman 
GRACE LEE

Latest F-35 has fastest induction to ALIS

Senior AirmanGRACE LEE The 14th F-35 Lightning II joint strike fighter to arrive at Luke Air Force Base is shown Dec. 5 on the flightline. Airmen at the 61st Aircraft Maintenance Unit worked quickly to get the aircraft ready to...
 
 

Gratitude cultivates exceptional leadership

Several months ago I was inspired by the phrase “cultivate an attitude of gratitude.” The topic was presented in a religious context; however, I found these words significant and profound when considered as a tenent of exceptional leadership. Cultivate is an action verb. The word brings to mind images of an experienced gardener patiently tending...
 

 

Leadership vs. management

Have you ever had a boss or someone that made you want to come to work every day, someone you would do anything for without question? Then you were probably working beside a leader, not a manager. The biggest difference between managers and leaders is the way they motivate people who work for or follow...
 
 

Decking the halls …

Staff Sgt. Timothy Boyer Andrea Mathis, 56th Force Support Squadron Fighter Country Inn accounting clerk, decorates a Christmas tree Dec. 4 in the lobby at the Fighter Country Inn at Luke Air Force Base. Base lodging is available to active-duty service members, retirees and dependents on a space-available basis. For more information, call 623-856-3941.
 
 

Safety begins with asking ‘What could go wrong?’

I’m sure most of us have been told to “be safe” at some point either by a commander, supervisor or even a co-worker. This holiday season will probably not be any different. Someone will use this simple phrase in the next few weeks, and it will feel like a cliché to you, but what does...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin