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  • Hill Airmen, F-35 a lethal combo at Red Flag

    Airmen from the 388th Fighter Wing’s 4th Fighter Squadron wrapped up flying operations with the F-35A Lightning II in an “exponentially more challenging” Red Flag. The 4th FS integrated the F-35A into a large, capable “Blue Force” in diverse missions against an equally capable “Red Force.” Nearly 3,000 personnel from 39 separate units participated in the exercise, including the U.S. Navy, U.S. Air Force, Royal Air Force and Royal Australian Air Force.
  • Red Flag strengthens F-35A maintainers

    After more than two weeks launching F-35A sorties at Red Flag 19-1, maintainers with the 388th Fighter Wing are impressed with the jet and the young airmen who help maintain it. The 4th Fighter Squadron and 4th Aircraft maintenance unit brought 12 jets and more than 200 Airmen from Hill Air Force Base, Utah, to Red Flag for the three week exercise. Red Flag is the Air Force’s premier combat exercise and pits a friendly “blue” force against an enemy “red” force in challenging combat scenarios. “This is about as close as you’re going to get to a deployed environment. We’ve been able to sustain a very aggressive schedule and keep the mission-capable rate high,” said Master Sgt. Paul DeGrechie, production superintendent with the 4th AMU. “The F-35 was designed to be maintenance friendly, and that’s been the case here.”
  • 'Trial by Flag' for new F-35A pilots

    The desert screams by below. The clouds scream by above. Both stretch on into the horizon. It’s deceptively calm in the cockpit. There’s a constant, seemingly discordant stream of chatter coming through his helmet. The digital screens in front of him, along with images projected onto his visor, provide enough information to save lives and take a few as well. In the sky ahead are more than 60 advanced enemy aircraft, flown by some of the best fighter pilots in the world. They are hunting – looking to kill him and his wingmen. He just graduated pilot training. Welcome to Red Flag.
  • 388th Fighter Wing completes combat exercise

    The 388th Fighter Wing’s 4th Fighter Squadron and 4th Aircraft Maintenance Unit recently completed a combat exercise where they tested and evaluated their capabilities to operate the F-35A Lightning II in a deployed environment. The units focused on combat operations and tactical scenarios – aircraft battle damage, downed-pilot recovery, and fighting in an environment with limited or no communications. Hill AFB is slated to be home to three F-35 fighter squadrons with a total of 78 aircraft by the end of 2019. The active duty 388th FW and Air Force Reserve 419th FW will fly and maintain the jets in a Total Force partnership, which capitalizes on the strength of both components
  • 388th FW dialing-in cannon loading, firing in training

    The 388th Fighter Wing’s 4th Aircraft Maintenance Unit and 4th Fighter Squadron were the first operational units to load and fire the F-35A’s cannon during training Aug. 13, and what they learned will influence how they train and fight. Loading and firing the cannon was one of the few capabilities Airmen in the 388th and 419th FWs had yet to demonstrate as they continue to develop the combat capability of the Air Force’s most advanced multi-role fighter aircraft.
  • Hill F-16 squadrons celebrating 40 years of combat airpower, part 2

    In honor of the F-16, whose operational service here is coming to a close this year, we continue our two-week tribute to the men and women of the 388th Fighter Wing and Team Hill who have supported Viper’s combat mission for the past 38 years.
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