AETC commander visits Luke

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Senior Airman James Hensley

Lt. Gen. Darryl Roberson, Air Education and Training Command commander, visited Luke Air Force Base Dec. 2 through 3 to acquaint himself with the base and personnel. It is his first visit to Luke since taking command of AETC in July. Cheryl, his wife, and Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, AETC command chief, accompanied the commander.

His visit emphasized familiarization with the F-35 Lightning II operations at Luke to include maintenance, training and simulator experience. The visit also included an all-call, during which the general spoke to Luke Airmen.

“What you’re doing here is so important,” he told the audience. “Luke fills a critical role in producing F-16 and F-35 pilots for our Air Force and air forces around the world.”

Roberson highlighted his priorities: motivated mission accomplishment, compassionate care of Airmen and families, innovation and leadership.

“There are a lot of ways to get the job done,” he said. “We want to do it in a way that is motivational, builds teams and gets it done right the first time. We have to take care of Airmen and their families so they can take care of the mission. In today’s environment, we must be innovative. And, it takes leadership at every level for AETC to succeed.”

The general also discussed total force integration and sequestration among other things.

While at Luke, Roberson visited several units including the 61st Fighter Squadron and aircraft maintenance unit, the 944th Fighter Wing, and the F-35 Academic Training Center – the newest facility at Luke.

“Air Power truly does start here,” he said. “You are the ones working to make it happen every day.”