HomeNewsArticle Display

Fairchild, Grand Forks crews support NATO summit

Senior Airman William Smith looks over a checklist to perform an engine run-up at Royal Air Force Mildenhall Dec. 4. KC-135 aircrews, crew chiefs and maintainers from Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash., and Grand Forks AFB, N.D., are deployed RAF Mildenhall to augment its refueling wing. Airman Smith is an avionics specialist assigned to the 92nd Air Refueling Wing. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Scott Wakefield)

Senior Airman William Smith looks over a checklist to perform an engine run-up at Royal Air Force Mildenhall Dec. 4. KC-135 aircrews, crew chiefs and maintainers from Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash., and Grand Forks AFB, N.D., are deployed RAF Mildenhall to augment its refueling wing. Airman Smith is an avionics specialist assigned to the 92nd Air Refueling Wing. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Scott Wakefield)

Staff Sgt. Justin Elder rolls up a communications line following an engine run-up and defueling at Royal Air Force Mildenhall, England, Dec. 4. KC-135 Stratotanker aircrews, crew chiefs and maintainers from Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash., and Grand Forks AFB, N.D., are deployed RAF Mildenhall to augment its refueling wing. Sergeant Elder is a crew chief assigned to the 92nd Air Refueling Wing. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Scott Wakefield)

Staff Sgt. Justin Elder rolls up a communications line following an engine run-up and defueling at Royal Air Force Mildenhall, England, Dec. 4. KC-135 Stratotanker aircrews, crew chiefs and maintainers from Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash., and Grand Forks AFB, N.D., are deployed RAF Mildenhall to augment its refueling wing. Sergeant Elder is a crew chief assigned to the 92nd Air Refueling Wing. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Scott Wakefield)

Staff Sgt. Justin Elder places protection covers on the engine of a 92nd Air Refueling Wing KC-135 Stratotanker deployed to Royal Air Force Mildenhall, England, Dec. 4. KC-135 aircrews, crew chiefs and maintainers from Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash., and Grand Forks AFB, N.D., are deployed RAF Mildenhall to augment its refueling wing. Sergeant Elder is a crew chief assigned to the 92nd Air Refueling Wing. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Scott Wakefield)

Staff Sgt. Justin Elder places protection covers on the engine of a 92nd Air Refueling Wing KC-135 Stratotanker deployed to Royal Air Force Mildenhall, England, Dec. 4. KC-135 aircrews, crew chiefs and maintainers from Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash., and Grand Forks AFB, N.D., are deployed RAF Mildenhall to augment its refueling wing. Sergeant Elder is a crew chief assigned to the 92nd Air Refueling Wing. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Scott Wakefield)

ROYAL AIR FORCE MILDENHALL, England (AFPN) -- KC-135 Stratotanker aircraft along with aircrews, crew chiefs and maintainers from Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash., and Grand Forks AFB, N.D., are augmenting the refueling mission here in support of a NATO Summit mission.

The weeklong deployment by the two stateside units allowed the RAF Mildenhall refueling wing to provide support for a presidential support mission as part of the NATO Summit that took place in Riga, Latvia. The mission included refueling fighters providing air patrol over the Baltic Region. Usually accomplished by NATO, the mission was expanded to protect a greater airspace over an area where 26 heads of state are meeting.

Maj. Steve Preston is Fairchild's assistant director of operations.

"Seeing the teams work together, it was hard to tell where the Mildenhall crews began and the Fairchild and Grand Forks crews ended," he said.

"When we paired up with Mildenhall, our mission rate was really, really good," said Fairchild crew chief Senior Airman Jason Lechot.

The deployed crews flew one-third of all the missions, with every sortie departing on time and each having 100 percent effectiveness, something Major Preston attributes to the outstanding support the three units provided each other.

The chief of weapons at RAF Mildenhall, Capt. John Kelley, believes the ability by all crew members to work together so well is a byproduct of the level of training all refueling teams must accomplish to become fully qualified. He also attributes mission success to their ability to communicate and bring ideas to the table to make the mission flow more smoothly.

Because some team members have worked together before, Captain Kelley said "it was like the family getting back together for Thanksgiving."

Comment on this story (include name, location, and rank if applicable)

Engage

Twitter
RT @PACAF: #DYK: We have a program designed to reduce risk to aircrews/aircraft & surrounding community by reducing the risk of bird strike…
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: Acting SecAF Roth & @GenCQBrownJr flew on a #KC46 with @AirMobilityCmd #Airmen this week to learn more about the @USAirF
Twitter
Join @GenCQBrownJr's fireside chat with @MEaglen on accelerating change in the #USAF at 10 AM EST.… https://t.co/NYUfzC4B9d
Twitter
Join @cmsaf_official JoAnne Bass, Chief Master Sergeant of @SpaceForceDoD Roger Towberman and @thejointstaff #SEAC4https://t.co/kne8oL31kX
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: I recently visited several bases and saw how empowered, multi-capable #Airmen are driving the common sense changes requir…
Twitter
RT @AirForceAssoc: Tune in today at 0900 EST for #vAWS2021! https://t.co/3znoc5LrXF
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: Well done to all who had a role in this test launch and for keeping the Nation's strategic deterrent force #AlwaysReady!…
Twitter
.@GenCQBrownJr, @cmsaf_official and more will take part in @AirForceAssoc's 2021 Virtual Aerospace Warfare Symposi… https://t.co/d7NDRPgi3f
Twitter
RT @HQUSAFEAFAF: 🚨🚨 #BomberTaskForce Update 🚨🚨 USAF B-1B Lancers have arrived to Norway in support of upcoming #BTF missions. They are…
Twitter
Nearly 30 years after combat ended Feb. 28, 1991, #DesertStorm’s influence on the #AirForce and @SpaceForceDoD rema… https://t.co/ghmYOP50fr
Twitter
Twitter
The 2020 Vice Chief’s Challenge "Saving Airmen Time" results were announced. The 15 winning submissions were select… https://t.co/zDMQoiLDWD
Twitter
A team from @Travis60AMW and @JBSA_Official unload over 57,000 bottled water at Kelly Field, Texas. Approximately 8… https://t.co/vxSZ7vcxab
Twitter
The 25th Attack Group began flying the first active-duty operated @HQUSAFEAFAF MQ-9 Reaper sorties in Romania via r… https://t.co/JVllJwnmVA
Twitter
Eight #USAF F-16 Fighting Falcons and two KC-135 Stratotankers participated in an Agile Combat Employment exercise… https://t.co/i7DjyIqICh
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,329,616
Follow Us