Hill AFB, Rude Rams of the 34th Fighter Squadron

F-35 unit & base selection, delivery, activation
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neptune

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Unread post23 Jun 2014, 04:09

http://www.standard.net/Local/2014/06/2 ... -back.html

Hill Historic fighter squad is coming back

Sunday , June 22, 2014 - 7:17 PM

MITCH SHAW


HILL AIR FORCE BASE — If you ask Maj. Eric Fiederer, he’ll tell you he knew the Rude Rams of the 34th Fighter Squadron couldn’t be kept down for too long. And now, four years after Fiederer’s beloved squadron was put to bed indefinitely, the Air Force has validated his intuition — confirming last week that the currently inactive 34th FS of Hill Air Force Base will be returning to duty when the F-35 begins to arrive at the base. Fiederer, who now serves as a reservist with Hill’s 466th Fighter Squadron, was a member of the 34th when it was officially deactivated in the summer of 2010....

Nicknamed the “Rude Rams,” the 34th FS is steeped in rich military history. Its laudable reputation made the squadron’s deactivation somewhat of a dark day at Hill. .At that time, Hill was a finalist to host three F-35 operation wings and 72 individual jets. It wasn’t until December 2013 that the Air Force made a final decision on the jet, naming Hill as the destination for the military’s fifth generation fighter. But official word on the old fighter squadron’s fate had never been reported, until last week.Hill spokesman Richard Essary confirmed that when the F-35 comes to Hill, the 34th will be there to accept it..

Fiederer likened the 34th’s solemn historic status to that of a longstanding professional sports team, like the New York Yankees or the Green Bay Packers, but with one special caveat. "(The 34th’s) history has been forged in the blood of people who gave their lives for their country,“ he said. ”So we go to great lengths to keep that legacy alive.“.

According to a 2010 narrative written by former 388th Fighter Wing Historian Aaron Clark, the 34th's roots go back to Seymour Johnson Field, N.C., where it was activated for the first time on Oct. 15, 1944. The squadron flew P-47 Thunderbolts in combat operations over the Western Pacific in the latter days of World War II. .According to Clark, the group first flew F-105 Thunderchiefs in Vietnam and Maj. Kenneth Blank was the first pilot to shoot down a MiG-17, which occurred north of Hanoi. ..In 1969, the crew began flying the F-4E Phantom II and continued effective strikes on enemy targets.. In 1979, the 34th became the first fighter squadron to receive the new F-16 Fighting Falcon, which took the place of the F-4...The Rams finished their last deployment in May 2010 with a four-month stay at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan, where the squadron provided support to coalition forces on the ground. . :)
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Unread post23 Jun 2014, 12:45

neptune wrote:http://www.standard.net/Local/2014/06/22/Historic-Fighter-Squadron-at-Hill-that-was-deactivated-4-years-ago-is-coming-back.html

Hill Historic fighter squad is coming back

Sunday , June 22, 2014 - 7:17 PM

MITCH SHAW


HILL AIR FORCE BASE — If you ask Maj. Eric Fiederer, he’ll tell you he knew the Rude Rams of the 34th Fighter Squadron couldn’t be kept down for too long. And now, four years after Fiederer’s beloved squadron was put to bed indefinitely, the Air Force has validated his intuition — confirming last week that the currently inactive 34th FS of Hill Air Force Base will be returning to duty when the F-35 begins to arrive at the base. Fiederer, who now serves as a reservist with Hill’s 466th Fighter Squadron, was a member of the 34th when it was officially deactivated in the summer of 2010....

Nicknamed the “Rude Rams,” the 34th FS is steeped in rich military history. Its laudable reputation made the squadron’s deactivation somewhat of a dark day at Hill. .At that time, Hill was a finalist to host three F-35 operation wings and 72 individual jets. It wasn’t until December 2013 that the Air Force made a final decision on the jet, naming Hill as the destination for the military’s fifth generation fighter. But official word on the old fighter squadron’s fate had never been reported, until last week.Hill spokesman Richard Essary confirmed that when the F-35 comes to Hill, the 34th will be there to accept it..

Fiederer likened the 34th’s solemn historic status to that of a longstanding professional sports team, like the New York Yankees or the Green Bay Packers, but with one special caveat. "(The 34th’s) history has been forged in the blood of people who gave their lives for their country,“ he said. ”So we go to great lengths to keep that legacy alive.“.

According to a 2010 narrative written by former 388th Fighter Wing Historian Aaron Clark, the 34th's roots go back to Seymour Johnson Field, N.C., where it was activated for the first time on Oct. 15, 1944. The squadron flew P-47 Thunderbolts in combat operations over the Western Pacific in the latter days of World War II. .According to Clark, the group first flew F-105 Thunderchiefs in Vietnam and Maj. Kenneth Blank was the first pilot to shoot down a MiG-17, which occurred north of Hanoi. ..In 1969, the crew began flying the F-4E Phantom II and continued effective strikes on enemy targets.. In 1979, the 34th became the first fighter squadron to receive the new F-16 Fighting Falcon, which took the place of the F-4...The Rams finished their last deployment in May 2010 with a four-month stay at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan, where the squadron provided support to coalition forces on the ground. . :)



So how many squadrons will Hill have in total? Do they plan on keeping any F-16 squadrons? I remember, at the peak of the Cold War they had something like 5 squadrons (4 in the 388th and the Reserve squadron at the south end of the base).
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Unread post23 Jun 2014, 20:37

Woo hoo!!!! once again the Rams lead the way :D :D
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Unread post29 Sep 2014, 16:12

Hill Air Force Base announces when F-35 will land in Utah
29 Sep 2014 Nate Carlisle

"The Air Force says a squadron of its new combat jet, the F-35, will arrive in Utah in September 2015.

The aircraft’s arrival will add 475 jobs to the base while Hill and its units transition from flying and maintaining F-16s to the F-35s, according to information provided last week....

...The Air Force in December said the 388th Fighter Wing will receive 72 F-35s. The 419th Fighter Wing, a reserve unit, will fly the jets....

...Hill Air Force Base has 23 projects totaling $100 million to complete by July. Transitioning from the F-16 to the F-35 is expected to continue into 2019.

The first wave of 388th Fighter Wing pilots will come from F-35 test and training units in Florida, Arizona and Nevada. Some of Hill Air Force Base’s current F-16 pilots will be retrained to fly the F-35. Simmons said it hasn’t been determined how many F-16 pilots will be retrained.

Hill Air Force Base is already conducting maintenance on F-35s. A Dutch F-35 arrived at Hill Air Force Base early this year...."

Source: http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/home3/5845 ... r.html.csp
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Unread post29 Sep 2014, 18:33

"...The Air Force in December said the 388th Fighter Wing will receive 72 F-35s. The 419th Fighter Wing, a reserve unit, will fly the jets...."

So that sounds like a total of 96 F-35s. 72 for the three squadrons of the 388th and another 24 for the 419th?
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Unread post29 Sep 2014, 23:15

sferrin wrote:"...The Air Force in December said the 388th Fighter Wing will receive 72 F-35s. The 419th Fighter Wing, a reserve unit, will fly the jets...."

So that sounds like a total of 96 F-35s. 72 for the three squadrons of the 388th and another 24 for the 419th?


The 388th and 419th are no longer separate from an operational point of view so 72 will probably be the total for the base with the 419th flying jets and deploying within the active Squadrons, just like they do now...
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Unread post30 Sep 2014, 13:17

ruderamronbo wrote:
sferrin wrote:"...The Air Force in December said the 388th Fighter Wing will receive 72 F-35s. The 419th Fighter Wing, a reserve unit, will fly the jets...."

So that sounds like a total of 96 F-35s. 72 for the three squadrons of the 388th and another 24 for the 419th?


The 388th and 419th are no longer separate from an operational point of view so 72 will probably be the total for the base with the 419th flying jets and deploying within the active Squadrons, just like they do now...


So, effectively, Hill only has three squadrons these days. :| (Use to have 5 with over 120 planes.)
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Unread post20 Mar 2015, 01:53

Great dude. Ecstatic he's climbing the ladder and made 1 Star. "Rolls", a former Ram, flies the first F-35A student training sortie :D The Rude ones leading the way, as always

http://www.luke.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123442265

by Staff Sgt. Luther Mitchell Jr.
56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

3/19/2015 - LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. -- The 56th Fighter Wing officially began training new F-35 pilots today when the first student, Brigadier General Scott Pleus, 56th Fighter Wing commander, flew the wing's first training sortie.

Luke has a long and storied history of training fighter pilots. Advanced flight training in the AT-6 began at Luke in 1941 and by 1944 pilots at Luke had achieved one million hours of flying time. That legacy will continue with the F-35, an unprecedented fifth generation fighter combining stealth technology with fighter speed and agility, fully integrated sensors and network enabled operations, and state-of-the-art avionics. Luke's operators and maintainers will continue to generate local F-35 sorties. The 56th FW will continue to build the pilot and maintainer cadre and complete training systems preparations for the start of formal training with our international partners in May.

On Jan. 23 Pleus flew his last sortie in an F-16 Fighting Falcon. It represented a personal milestone for Pleus and also a step forward for the Airmen at Luke in realizing its new mission -- training the world's greatest F-35 and F-16 fighter pilots.

The first official class of student pilots is scheduled to begin at the Academic Training Center, a 145,000-square-foot two story state-of-the-art training center, May 4. Pleus will complete his training and join the cadre of instructor pilots training that first class of students.

The 61st Fighter Squadron is the first squadron in the 56th Fighter Wing scheduled to accomplish F-35 flying training for future F-35 instructor, operational and test pilots. It will train partner nation and follow-on U.S. Air Force pilots thereafter.

"Just over a year ago, the squadron moved into a new building, stood up new facilities and developed processes required for operating a fighter squadron and integrating into the 56th Fighter Wing," said Lt Col Michael Ebner, 61st Fighter Squadron commander. "Our 23 instructor pilots are honing instructional skills while exercising all the aircraft capabilities and our maintenance professionals continue to refine training processes and convert maintainers from all over the Air Force into F-35 experts."

Luke's F-35 program hit the ground running when the first F-35 arrived at Luke March 10, 2014 and in the coming weeks will reach the 1,000th F-35 sortie milestone.

Pleus's very first F-16 flight was in a 61st Fighter Squadron jet assigned to the 56th Fighter Wing, when the wing was assigned to MacDill, Air Force Base in Tampa, Fla. Ironically, his first F-35 flight is in a 61st Fighter Squadron jet assigned to the 56th Fighter Wing here at Luke.

"This is another step forward for Luke, the 56th Fighter Wing, and our Air Force," Pleus said. "The F-35 is going to be the backbone of the Air Force's fighter fleet for decades to come and Luke will play a vital role in producing the world's greatest, most lethal F-35 pilots. It's important that I complete my flying training here with our Airmen, in our airspace, so I could help refine and validate our program meeting the needs of our Air Force. With IOC scheduled to occur late next year, it's important that we get our training program and process dialed in and as efficient and refined as our F-16 training program is so we can help meet the Air Force's scheduled goal."

Pleus also reflected on the years of work that have gone into the F-35 program and putting Luke in position to begin training in May.

"We're about to fly our one thousandth F-35 sortie at Luke and my flight today was just one of those. Getting to this point hasn't just been accomplished over the past few months. It's really been done over the last few years. Lots of amazing Airmen who have already departed from Luke are the reason we are where we are with the F-35 program. What they did back then to set the base up is the reason why we will be so successful training the world's greatest F-35 pilots. I've got to say that I'm absolutely honored to fly the F-35. But the fact that I got to have my first flight again in the 61st Fighter Squadron really brings this full circle for me." Pleus said.

There are 20 F-35s assigned at Luke, two of which belong to the Royal Australian Air Force, an F-35 pilot training, partner nation.
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Unread post01 Apr 2015, 08:57

Look at the F-35 fighter jet
Published on Mar 20, 2015 FOX 10 Phoenix

"Brigadier General Scott Pleus says new F-35 fighter at Luke AFB is a state-of-the-art asset for America."

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Unread post02 Apr 2015, 08:23

Not quite like a real milestone in my book anyways but worthwhile to put here - no?
1,000th F-35 training sortie flown at Luke AFB
01 Apr 2015 56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

"LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. (AFNS) -- The 56th Fighter Wing flew its 1,000th F-35A Lightning II training sortie March 31, making it the fastest F-35 wing to reach the 1,000-sortie milestone in the Defense Department....

...There are 20 F-35s assigned to Luke, two of which belong to the Royal Australian air force, an F-35 pilot training, partner nation."

Source: http://www.af.mil/News/ArticleDisplay/t ... e-afb.aspx
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Unread post06 Jun 2015, 00:30

https://www.facebook.com/388fw/photos/p ... =1&theater
Check out these photos of what will soon be Hill's newest jet.
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Unread post20 Jun 2015, 00:35

http://www.388fw.acc.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123451278 388th Fighter Wing welcomes new commander

"Next month, the 34th FS will activate and become the Air Force's first operational squadron to fly the F-35. The wing will receive it's first F-35 this fall..." Hurray!! :D
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Unread post20 Jun 2015, 04:33

AF-78, right?
Looks to be almost done...

or is it 77??
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Unread post08 Jul 2015, 03:06

Historic fighter squadron coming back to Hill AFB
02 Jul 2015 Mitch Shaw | Hilltop Times Correspondent

"7/2/2015 - HILL AIR FORCE BASE -- Just over five years ago at Hill Air Force Base, budget cuts killed one of the Air Force's most historic fighter squadrons.

But the commander who witnessed that deactivation is bringing back the "Rude Rams."

In a ceremony at Hill in mid-June, Col. David Lyons became the new commander of Hill's 388th Fighter Wing. Lyons took the reins from Col. Lance Landrum, who fulfilled commander duties for the 1,500-person wing for the past two years....

...When the F-35s begin to arrive at Hill, they'll be divided among three fighter squadrons and flown and maintained by members of both the 388th and its reserve component 419th Fighter Wing.

The first jet is scheduled to arrive at Hill in September, with the rest of the fleet coming in on a staggered basis, spread through 2019.

The jets will be delivered at a rate of slightly more than one per month until August 2016. By that time, the base hopes to have 15 jets on base and reach a status the Air Force calls "Initial Operational Capability," which means Hill meets the minimum operational capabilities to use the jet for normal operations.

Lyons said the transition from the F-16 to the F-35 will likely present hurdles.

"It's a new airplane with new technology and new ways to maintain it," he said. "That's going to present challenges."

An Air Force-wide shortage of maintainers will also offer a test.

The base will transition its 4th Fighter Squadron, along with its 24 F-16s, early, in order to ensure there are enough maintainers for the F-35.

"(The maintainer shortage) is another challenge," Lyons said. "It's critical to get the manpower we need to bring on this new technology."

Without offering an official endorsement, Lyons also spoke of the proposed expansion of the Utah Test and Training Range.

The Air Force is proposing to expand the Utah Test and Training Range by nearly 700,000 acres in the rural areas of Box Elder, Juab and Tooele counties, providing a buffer against encroachment from communities through natural expansion and allowing for more testing space for the F-35.

"I don't want to get too far out of my lane here," Lyons said. "But the (F-35) requires a lot of airspace to train for the unique mission sets we'll be able to do, so that airspace is absolutely critical.""

JPG: http://www.hill.af.mil/shared/media/pho ... 7K-004.jpg

Source: http://www.hill.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123452556
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Unread post18 Jul 2015, 16:04

34th Fighter Squadron activates, commences Hill's combat F-35 era
17 Jul 2015 UNK

"7/17/2015 - Col. David B. Lyons, 388th Fighter Wing commander, unfurls the 34th Fighter Squadron’s guidon during its activation ceremony July 17 at Hill Air Force Base, Utah. The 34th will be the first combat squadron to fly the Air Force’s newest fighter aircraft, the F-35A.... The 34th’s first F-35A will arrive in September. U.S. Air Force photo by Alex R. Lloyd"

Photo: http://alert5.com/wp-content/uploads/20 ... 1-1371.jpg (1.7Mb)

Source: http://www.hill.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123453720
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