September 29, 2010 (by Lt. Col. Reid A. Christopherson) - The Airmen of the 114th Fighter Wing, South Dakota Air National Guard, have once again distinguished themselves as the most outstanding Air National Guard fighter unit in the nation.
Tail detail of USAF F-16C block 30 #85-1448 with markings of the 114th FW.
The Fightin' Lobos were selected as the 2010 recipient of the National Guard Bureau’s Winston P. Wilson Trophy.
The trophy is awarded annually to the most outstanding Air National Guard Unit equipped with jet fighter or reconnaissance aircraft. The presentation was made by Lt. Gen. Harry M. Wyatt III, director, Air National Guard at the annual conference of the National Guard Association of the United States in Austin, Texas.
"The selection for this prestigious award provides strong affirmation by U.S. Air Force leaders of their confidence in the contributions of the South Dakota Air National Guard to our nation’s defense," said Col Russ Walz, commander of the 114th Fighter Wing. "Recognitions such as the Winston P. Wilson Trophy provide significant validation of our unit’s readiness to continually step into new missions."
The 114th Fighter Wing was recently selected as one of the few Air National Guard units in the nation to convert from the block 30
F‐16, which it has flown since 1992, to the newer and more advanced block 40
F‐16. Over the past two decades the unit has deployed eight times to allied bases in Turkey
, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iraq flying combat missions in Southwest Asia.
This trophy was named for Maj. Gen. Winston P. Wilson, former chief, National Guard Bureau (1963‐1971). General Wilson is considered to be the architect of the United States’ modern Ready Reserve ensuring readiness of National Guard units to swiftly join regular forces on overseas missions. This is the fourth time the trophy as been awarded to the South Dakota Air National Guard. It was previously received in 1981, 1983 and 2007.