Hunters welcome 15th AF leaders for inaugural visit

0
120
Col. Stephen Jones, left, 432nd Wing/432nd Air Expeditionary Wing commander, surveys the base from an air traffic control tower with Maj. Gen. Chad Franks, right, 15th Air Force commander, at Creech Air Force Base, Nev., Jan. 5, 2021. Franks was able to observe as Jones pointed out new structures being built across the installation, as well as the amenities offered to Hunter Airmen. (Air Force photograph by Airman 1st Class William Rio Rosado)
Advertisement

The 15th Air Force command team visited Creech Air Force Base, Nev., Jan. 5, 2021, for their first immersion since the wing was re-aligned under 15th AF in August of 2020.

Maj. Gen. Chad P. Franks, Fifteenth Air Force commander, joined by Chief Master Sgt. Benjamin W. Hedden, 15th Air Force command chief, toured Creech AFB to learn more about the quality of life for the installation’s Airmen, as well as the advancements in the 432nd Wing/432nd Air Expeditionary Wing’s mission.

“The Hunters’ dedication to each other, and their mission is like no other,” Franks said. “From their beginnings as an auxiliary unit to now, they have proven their dedication to innovation and growth. I have confidence they will continue to lead the way as the 15th AF builds its vision for the future of the Remotely Piloted Aircraft enterprise.”

Maj. Gen. Chad Franks, 15th Air Force commander, is welcomed by 432nd Wing/432nd Air Expeditionary Wing leadership to Creech Air Force Base, Nev., Jan. 5, 2021. Franks and Chief Master Sgt. Benjamin Hedden, 15th AF command chief, paid their inaugural visit as Fifteenth AF leadership by immersing into the mission headquartered at Creech, and the accomplishments of its Airmen. (Air Force photograph by Senior Airman Haley Stevens)

The team began their immersive visit at Creech’s air traffic control tower, overlooking the entire base to give a broad view of the installation layout, and to discuss the unique nature of the base as well as ongoing projects, and key infrastructure critical to mission sustainment.

After seeing Hunters’ daily operations from above, the next stop was the Persistent Attack and Reconnaissance Center, a tenant unit under the direct command of the NAF, for a closer look at the synchronization and management, of MQ-9 operations.

The visit continued for Franks by diving deeper into Mission Control Element side of combat operations at the 30th Reconnaissance Squadron, while Hedden observed the connectivity and maintenance of the mission by visiting the 432nd Aircraft Communications Squadron, soon followed by a distanced meet-and-greet.

“I always look forward to visiting Airmen on the flight line,” Hedden said. “As a prior maintainer, it keeps me humble and reminds me where I came from.”

Maj. Gen. Chad Franks, Fifteenth Air Force commander, coins an Airman in the 432nd Wing/432nd Air Expeditionary Wing at Creech Air Force Base, Nevada, Jan. 5, 2021. Franks recognized multiple Airmen throughout his visit for their accomplishments. (Air Force photograph by Airman 1st Class William Rio Rosado)

Franks and Hedden reconnected for a mission update in the 867th Attack Squadron, before rallying with the wing’s group commanders for an overall quality of life update, as well as a synopsis of the wing’s pursuit for optimized training and equipping of the force for the future fight.

The conversations touched on several subjects, such as the MQ-9 Reaper’s Automatic Takeoff and Landing Capability testing successes, and future implementation as well as the 25th Attack Group’s strides toward Reconstitution.  Reconstitution is an opportunity for combat squadrons to take a temporary pause in their 24/7 missions and focus on garrison unit functions such as advanced training and certification, before resuming round-the-clock combat RPA operations, potentially  in a new geographical area of responsibility.

This was the first of many visits for the historic NAF, and leaders and Airmen from across the wing had the opportunity to share their work with Fifteenth Air Force leadership.

“We were honored to host the 15th AF leadership team,” said Col. Stephen Jones, 432nd Wing/432nd Air Expeditionary Wing commander. “The visit gave us an opportunity to showcase the daily global impact our wing has on national security. Plus, our Airmen demonstrated their ability to adapt to the challenges of COVID-19 while executing the mission with continued excellence and precision.”
 

Chief Master Sgt. Benjamin W. Hedden, 15th Air Force command chief, surveys the MQ-9 Reaper alongside Chief Master Sgt. Michelle Browning, 432nd Wing/432nd Air Expeditionary Wing command chief, during a visit to Creech Air Force Base, Nev., Jan. 5, 2020. The MQ-9 Reaper is the primary weapons system operated by the 432nd Wing/432nd Air Expeditionary Wing, and conducts 24/7 dominant, persistent attack and reconnaissance on behalf of the U.S. Air Force. (Air Force photograph by Senior Airman Haley Stevens)

 
 
 

DON'T FORGET TO SUBSCRIBE 

Get the latest news from Desert Lightning News at Nellis & Creech AFB

Select list(s) to subscribe to


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Aerotech News and Review, 220 E. Ave. K-4, Lancaster, CA, 93535, http://www.aerotechnews.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact

Advertisement