HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah (ABC4 News) – Hill Air Force Bas completed a combat capability exercise with active duty 388th Fighter Wing and Reserve 419th at the Utah Test and Training Range.
More than 40 aircraft participated and base officials said this type of joint-exercise is usually only available during large-force exercises like “Red Flag.”
“Normally our maintainers have two to three hours to turn an aircraft, so having to do so every 30 minutes really tests their skill,” said Capt. John Goodwin, 419th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron maintenance operations officer. “These exercises are an extremely effective and essential way to ensure our overall readiness.”
Those wings are now participating in Combat Hammer, a weapons evaluation from May 6 through May 17, also at the Training and Test Range. The 388th and 419th Fighter Wings are the Air Force’s first operational combat-capable F-35 units.
According to the public affairs spokesperson, “the primary mission of the 388th Fighter Wing is to rapidly employ combat power with the F-35A Lightning II aircraft worldwide in support of the national defense.”
That fighter wing is assigned about 1,800 airman and civilian professionals.