HomeNewsArticle Display

First USAF F-35A takes overseas flight to England

ROYAL AIR FORCE FAIRFORD, England (AFNS) -- The Air Combat Command F-35A Heritage Flight team accomplished America’s first transatlantic flight in an F-35A Lightning II, with refueling support from a KC-10 Extender, when it touched down here June 30.

This historic flight, which brought the team to England from Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, was a first for not only the F-35A; it was also the KC-10’s first time refueling the fighter jet transcontinentally.

“Any time there is a first in the United States Air Force and you get to be a part of it, is a real honor,” said Capt. Daniel DeRusha, a 9th Air Refueling Wing KC-10 aircraft commander. “Our crew is just like any other KC-10 crew; they are all more than capable of performing this mission.”

The fifth-generation fighter traveled to England in support of the Royal International Air Tattoo, the world’s largest military air show, which takes place July 14-16 at Royal Air Force Fairford. The event features joint, coalition and civilian flight teams, aerial acts and static displays.

While the KC-10 is not staying for RIAT, the F-35 will join a P-51 Mustang and F-22 Raptor in a heritage pass showcasing the past, present and future of airpower. The heritage team will also be on the ground before and after the pass to answer attendees’ questions about the U.S. Air Force’s newest fighter jet.

“(When) we can be a part of something that promotes the capabilities of the Air Force as well as the capabilities of our integration with our foreign allies, is a wonderful opportunity,” DeRusha said. “Everyone on the crew understood the importance of that, and we’re very thankful that we got to be a part of it.”

For the lead F-35A pilot, this historic flight and opportunity at RIAT not only showed the jet’s airpower but also the strength of the Air Force.

“It really shows the teamwork that went into it; not only the logistics support, but the maintainers to the tanker units -- it really was a team effort,” said Maj. Will Andreotta, the ACC F-35A Heritage Flight team commander. “Being able to go international with the F-35 is a huge honor. It’s something that we can now bring out to people and say, ‘This is what the Air Force in the United States is going to offer in the future and this is what your country is going to offer as well."

Engage

Facebook Twitter
#ICYMI, Ms. Brie Larson, star of the upcoming feature film "Captain Marvel," joined #Airmen from across the NCR and… https://t.co/6lxYK3l85A
“Our dogs are definitely not pets; they are #MilitaryWorkingDogs – assets to the #USAF…The trust these teams have i… https://t.co/PVPq9Up5iN
#USAF optometry clinics keep #Airmen's eyes healthy so they can keep their sights set on the mission.… https://t.co/siyO4osHjr
First female chaplain from the #171ARW completes Leadership Development Institute training, develops the first… https://t.co/oFFpYZf9Mg
.@USAFReserve #Airmen @45thSpaceWing put their lives on temporary hold to respond to the aftermath of… https://t.co/m0yaqqUEaV
#ICYMI, @HAFB took a different approach to #cosplay at #FanX18 by teaming up with the Utah Engineers Council to pre… https://t.co/RChVGaP8rN
RT @USAFHealth: #TBT Flight Nurse Captain Shirley A. Armstrong hands a cup of fruit juice to a patient in a C-141 Starlifter during a medic…
Rapid global mobility is the mantra of the #816EAS and #ICYMI #Airmen continued to live it by shuttling cargo and l… https://t.co/5VI4R4wFQa
.@AETCommand officials announced the second iteration of Pilot Training Next https://t.co/qB5YwQSLip
RT @SecAFOfficial: The #AirForce We Need, begins with resilient and ready #Airmen. #ASC18 #CMSAF https://t.co/ogfN6Xtn2V https://t.co/kyCJ…
We're going #LIVE as #CMSAF Wright speaks at #ASC18. Watch on our Facebook page at 10:45 a.m. EDT:… https://t.co/LIc3O6CdiW
Our own @AstroHague will launch into #Space in less than a month! https://t.co/RaQsXp14NP
In order to support the NDS, the Air Force We Need will require a restructure of our expeditionary force structure.… https://t.co/O63bDWHAbC
RT @AF_Academy: The #CaptainMarvel trailer is finally here. Now, we're not saying we make superheroes but she's not wearing a @WestPoint_US
RT @GenDaveGoldfein: To ensure our 386 Operational Squadrons are trained, equipped and ready to fight, we will depend on the entire Air For…
RT @AFSpace: Honored to have @VP Pence & @SecAFOfficial visit the #AFSPC booth today on the #AFBday! They met some of our amazing AFSPC Air…
RT @Yankees: Tonight, we celebrated the @usairforce's 71st Birthday with: - Presentation of Colors by the U.S. Air Force Honor Guard from J…