Edwards AFB sailors get new skipper

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Air Force photograph by Matt Williams

Cmdr. Ernest Anderson, VX-9 DET Edwards commander (left), is greeted by Command Master Chief Petty Officer Ronnie Ogren, VX-9 DET Edwards’ senior enlisted member, before a change of command ceremony in Hangar 1810, Sept. 20, 2018. Anderson assumed command of the U.S. Navy’s F-35C test unit base at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.

Cmdr. Ernest Anderson took command of VX-9 DET Edwards during a change of command ceremony in Hangar 1810 at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., Sept. 20, 2018.

Anderson will oversee the local testing of the F-35C — the U.S. Navy’s version of the new fifth-generation fighter.

Anderson previously served as the executive officer for VX-9 DET Edwards and succeeds U.S. Navy Capt. Matt Norris.

The VX-9 detachment at Edwards AFB is a tenant unit that falls under the Navy’s Air Test and Evaluation Squadron Nine based out of Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake, Calif.

A U.S. Navy honor guard displays the colors before the VX-9 DET Edwards change of command ceremony in Hangar 1810, Sept. 20, 2018. Cmdr. Ernest Anderson assumed the leadership role from outgoing commander, U.S. Navy Capt. Matt Norris. VX-9 DET Edwards conducts testing of the F-35C, the Navy’s variant of the F-35 Lightning II fifth-generation fighter.

VX-9’s mission statement reads, “Support of our National Military Strategy by providing new warfighting capability to the fleet by testing aircraft, weapons, and weapon systems in an operationally relevant environment. Develop advanced warfighting tactics for the fleet operator to enable him/her to lay waste to our enemies with violent prejudice.”

The Navy’s F-35C is one of three versions of the F-35 Lightning II fifth-generation fighter. The C version is equipped for aircraft carrier operations.