June 11, 2010 (by SSgt. Jasmine Reif) - With 19 years of experience flying the F-16, Lt. Col. Jack Maixner, 56th Operations Groups deputy commander, hit 3,000 flying hours June 3 at Luke Air Force Base.
Lt. Col. Jack Maixner, 56th Operations Group deputy commander, greets fellow 310th FS pilots after landing on June 3rd, 2010. During his flight, Colonel Maixner surpassed 3,000 flying hours in the F-16. [USAF photo by A1C. Ronifel Yasay]
Colonel Maixner graduated from the Air Force Academy in 1989 and went on to undergraduate flight school at Vance AFB
, Okla., in 1990. He was assigned to Luke in 1991 to complete his flight training. His first operational wing assignment was at the 69th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Moody AFB, Ga. Throughout his career, he has filled many positions including instructor pilot, F-22 test manager, wing safety chief and several command positions at home stations and deployed locations.
"For the most part, I have only flown the F-16, which is fine, because it's the world's finest fighter," Colonel Maixner said. "I did fly Iraqi reconnaissance aircraft on one of my Operation Iraqi Freedom tours, but that was my only non F-16 time during the past 19 years."
Colonel Maixner's flight hours have been accumulated state-side and at several deployments overseas.
"I've been very lucky to have been stationed at six F-16 bases," he said. "Most of my hours were accumulated during my two tours at Moody, which included three deployments to Operation Southern Watch."
Of his many assignments he said his favourite location has been Luke.
"Luke is my favourite duty station, because I was lucky enough to command the 63rd Fighter Squadron Panthers," Col. Maixner said. "Also, the Barry M. Goldwater Range offers outstanding flying training, but flying in combat and doing what we are trained to do in defence of our nation is the pinnacle of aviation. All pilots remember their combat time the most."
Over the course of his career he has accumulated many memories that will stay with him.
"I can't narrow down a most memorable flight or incident, but my favourite memories all involve great friends and the camaraderie that comes with fighter aviation," he said.