HomeNewsArticle Display

First operational F-35A squadron receives final aircraft

Airman 1st Class Matthew Clark with the 34th Aircraft Maintenance Unit directs the pilot who flew the 388th Fighter Wing’s 24th aircraft assigned to the 34th Fighter Squadron / 34th AMU June 21. The 24th aircraft is significant because it completes the first full F-35A squadron at an operational unit. (U.S. Air Force photo/Donovan K Potter)

Airman 1st Class Matthew Clark, a 34th Aircraft Maintenance Unit Airman, marshals the newest F-35A Lightning II aircraft June 21, 2017, at Hill Air Force Base, Utah. This aircraft signifies the completion of the first full F-35A squadron at an operational unit. (U.S. Air Force photo/Donovan K Potter)

HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah (AFNS) -- The 34th Fighter Squadron and 34th Aircraft Maintenance Unit at Hill Air Force Base accepted its final two combat-coded F-35A Lightning lls June 21, 2017.

The addition of the 24th and final aircraft means the units have their full component of operational jets.

“Gaining the 24th F-35A here is another outstanding milestone for the 388th and 419th wings,” said Col. Jason Rueschhoff, the 388th Operations Group commander. “This allows both operations and maintenance to fine-tune our tactics, techniques and procedures with a focus on maximizing our combat lethality.”

This is a pivotal point for combat-capability development said Col. Michael Miles, the 388th Maintenance Group commander.

"Having the full number of aircraft in one FS/AMU means we'll soon receive our full personnel and equipment,” Miles said. “This allows us to meet all potential combat taskings."

The 388th Fighter Wing received its first F-35A in November 2015. Since that time, the unit has developed the best tactics, techniques and procedures, shaping how the F-35A operates in the Air Force, said Capt. Christina Merritt, the 34th AMU officer in charge.

Merritt said receiving the 24th aircraft pushes the threshold and helps Airmen further test the limits of the F-35A.

The 4th FS and 4th AMU are expected to receive the next F-35A this summer. A total of 78 jets will be delivered to two additional F-35A squadrons in the 388th FW through 2019. 

Engage

Facebook Twitter
RT @AETCommand: BIG change to the @usairforce's special warfare recruiting & initial training pipeline aimed at ensuring enlisted recruits…
This HGU-55/P helmet is fitted with a Hybrid Optical-based Inertial Tracker and day visor at Moody Air Force Base,… https://t.co/rMzsO03MLL
BRRRRRRTT The @A10DemoTeam travels the world showcasing the unique capabilities of the Thunderbolt II. The… https://t.co/giQWIwD0rA
Congratulations to @388fw and @419fw for reaching "full warfighting capability" with the F-35A Lightning II ✈️… https://t.co/5BwOupKSU7
Easy like Sunday morning. https://t.co/7Yp9fKDHnn
Congratulations to Air Force Civil Engineer Tim Sullivan, who was named the 2020 Federal Engineer of the Year! 🎉… https://t.co/tIafy8KqKs
Did you know anxiety and depression are invisible wound conditions that can affect our Airmen? They can manifest in… https://t.co/7TJn1CICbh
Airmen practice joint close air support during exercise Cope North 20 to improve combat readiness, develop integrat… https://t.co/GLpsJAlvCx
RT @inspire_af_: The @usairforce understands the importance of innovation, and @AETCommand is continuing to move towards student-centered l…
RT @AirmanMagazine: These @usairforce U-2 pilots fly at 70,000 ft, where they provide vital reconnaissance for U.S. combatant commanders.…
Spouses, family members, & caregivers are a vital part of the #AirForce family. They take care of us & we must take… https://t.co/ayzETFm5M1
The Air Force Gunsmith Shop recently released a redesigned M4 Carbine that will fit in most ejection seats. This Ai… https://t.co/f4UPJLlPxp
RT @AETCommand: Innovating in your everyday environment doesn't always lend itself to creativity! Check out the Spark Cell space at Altus…
.@USAFCENT Airmen refuel a KC-135 with a Force system in Southwest Asia. This new capability provides more efficien… https://t.co/fA2OARRUqj
RT @ArmedwScience: Civil engineering is a key part of a deployed environment. Listen as this airman explains the civil engineering capabili…
WATCH: @SecAFOfficial joins @SecArmy and @SECNAV for a discussion with @CSIS on the state of the services, defense… https://t.co/Vfk09EMBdP
Congratulations Capt Lockridge. #AimHigh https://t.co/fcJQi1vsFO
.@ABCSharkTank, anyone? The Air Force Spark Tank announced its 2020 selectees. 6 Airmen were selected to present… https://t.co/5aoPxZ2OTF
Capt Jessica Knizel was the first of 10 Air Force Aerospace Nurse Practitioners. To meet the qualifications, Kniz… https://t.co/hu2WXp8i8z