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
Jetting into the weekend like... #F16 https://t.co/wEWD7vr476
.@AstroHague showing his #USAF pride during the anniversary week of the #Apollo50 landing. @ISS_Researchhttps://t.co/WdgCFDmz6f
'Only two of us were not shot or dying': #USAF #Airman receives Silver Star for heroism in Afghanistan heroism… https://t.co/IdmKq8gtDx
RT @AFResearchLab: Dr. Lisa Rueschhoff was one of 82 engineers chosen to attend @theNAEng 2019 U.S. Frontiers of Engineering Symposium! Sh…
RT @ActingSecAF: .@GenDaveGoldfein is bolstering partners & #allies across Europe, discussing how we can be #StrongerTogether in air, #spac
Annual recovery efforts have helped to identify 40 of the 52 service members lost when a C-124 crashed into Mount G… https://t.co/fdHUY2IATf
8 of the surviving #Apollo #Astronauts got together for the 50th anniversary of the #moonlanding. @NASAhttps://t.co/szPJHXupa1
RT @HQUSAFEPA: Gen. Goldfein, during his keynote address at the 2019 Chief of the Air Staff's Air and Space Power Conference said the follo…
.@WrightPattAFB opened a #cyberdefense facility for #USAF Life Cycle Management Center's Fighters & Bombers Directo… https://t.co/QibdORLX2q
RT @GenDaveGoldfein: Our asymmetric advantage is represented in this room. It is all of us working together on a common cause. Great to see…
.@AFResearchLab supports @AFThunderbirds w/cutting-edge aerospace #technology. From G-suits, custom earpieces, fly-… https://t.co/HJ07fLg2aP
Operating from rough dirt strips, the #C130 Hercules is capable of transporting & airdropping troops & equipment in… https://t.co/c4vsC76vRX
Tune into @TheWilsonCenter July 18, 2019 at 8:05 a.m. (EDT) to hear #USAirForce Lt. Gen. Bussiere, @USNorthernCmd A… https://t.co/M2LTH8wpx5
.@DMAFB #Airmen traveled more than 1700 miles to save two critically injured Mexican fishermen onboard the Mazatun… https://t.co/tcTnNPC8Zj
RT @KadenaAirBase: #ICYMI: #TeamKadena will be activating a new special operations squadron for the operation and maintenance of the #CV22
#OTDIH, The B-2 Spirit's inaugural test flight happened from Palmdale to @EdwardsAFB, #California. The B-2 Spirit i… https://t.co/bS7ODGlxsP
.@HAFB #Airmen conduct #F35 missions while temporary assigned to @366FW. This is the largest off-station F-35A Li… https://t.co/KlbXq7jBLg
RT @MacDill_AFB: CSM John W. Troxell has our #TotalForce team here at MacDill feeling empowered! 😎💪 Thanks for visiting our service members…
.@NellisAFB plans to roll out shorts for maintenance technicians to wear on the flight line in the scorching Nevada… https://t.co/fcavaNG112
⚡️ “RAF Lakenheath breaks ground on future F-35 infrastructure” by @usairforce https://t.co/wiOjMMONZD