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History is often on the minds of those who fly and maintain the KC-135 Stratotankers at Fairchild Air Force Base.
Fuel is liquid gold for the U.S. Air Force, and Fairchild Air Force Base will remain a linchpin for delivering it to aircraft in midflight using decades-old aircraft with a crucial fix for the service’s new tanker model years away.
Lt. Col. Cindy Dawson is the new commander of the reactivated 97th Air Refueling Squadron at Fairchild Air Force Base, the largest wing of KC-135 Stratotankers in the world.
“We are the center of excellence for air refueling, which essentially is the backbone of our global reach capability,” said Col. Gene Jacobus, vice commander of the 92nd Air Refueling Wing. “We like to think that we put the ‘global’ in ‘global reach.’”
The window behind Tech. Sgt. Shawn Roberge’s computer at Fairchild Air Force Base reveals a shop arranged with metal fabrication machines and tools he uses to tinker with parts for an old KC-135 Stratotanker.
In a gallery of photos hanging on the wall of a cavernous World War II-era hangar at Fairchild Air Force Base, Lt. Gen. Giovanni Tuck’s picture shows him smiling, between similarly beaming photos of Gen. Carlton Everhart and Col. Ryan Samuelson. The placement is not unintentional. Samuelson, commander of the base, reports to Tuck, who reports to Everhart, commander of the Air Mobility Command. The chain of command continues as, just three photos away, appears Secretary of Defense James Mattis. Then President Donald Trump.
A 136-foot flying gas station can that can reach speeds of 580 miles per hour tends to get attention, especially when it flies low over Spokane.
As Fairchild Air Force Base moves into a position of being the largest refueling tanker base in the U.S. military, commanders are facing two years of preparation to get the base ready for its expanded mission, the wing commander said Tuesday.
The fleet of tankers at Fairchild Air Force Base is about to get bigger as the Air Force has announced plans to transfer 12 more KC-135 tankers to the West Plains base.
Fairchild Air Force Base Thursday took command of a third refueling squadron with the transfer of nine tankers and crew from McConnell Air Force Base.
Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell tell the Air Force it should send reassigned tankers to Fairchild.
Even though Fairchild wasn’t chosen for the Air Force’s next-generation refueling tankers, officials say the base could end up with more planes and people.
Local leaders appeared more sanguine, pivoting from the prospect of landing the new tankers to the possibility of getting more of the old ones.
It’s troubling that the Air Force officials would change criteria without being transparent. They know communities make critical decisions aimed at preserving air bases.
The competition to be the next home to the new air-refueling tanker got significantly stiffer this year and supporters of Fairchild Air Force Base are concerned the rules were changed in the middle of the game
A KC-135 air refueling tanker from Fairchild Air Force base rendezvoused Thursday, May 29, 2014, with members of the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds, which are back in Spokane to perform at this weekend's Skyfest.
More than 200 airmen and family members gathered Saturday morning at Fairchild Air Force Base’s Memorial Grove Park for the dedication of a memorial honoring the three airmen killed in a KC-135 Stratotanker explosion in the sky over Kyrgyzstan exactly one year ago. The memorial features a 5-foot granite pillar engraved with a tanker airplane and “Shell 77,” the plane’s call sign. Arranged around it in a half-circle are three small benches engraved with the names of those who died: Capt. Mark “Tyler” Voss, of Boerne, Texas; Capt. Victoria “Tory” Pinckney, of Colorado Springs, Colorado; and TSgt. Herman “Tre” Mackey III, of Bakersfield, California.
More than 200 Airmen and family members gathered at Fairchild Air Force Base’s Memorial Grove Park today for the dedication of a memorial honoring three Airmen killed in a KC-135 Stratotanker explosion in the sky over Kyrgyzstan exactly one year ago.
Anyone holding out hope that the first group of new air-refueling tankers would be located at Fairchild Air Force Base can give it up. Pegasus won’t be landing on the West Plains anytime soon. The Air Force confirmed Wednesday the first new KC-46As will go into regular service at McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas. McConnell was named the Air Force’s preferred choice for the first operational KC-46A tanker unit last May, with Fairchild as its backup.
A KC-135 tanker flown by a Fairchild crew shook apart over Kyrgyzstan last May. The tail section came off and the rest of the plane plummeted through the air until the right wing separated and the fuel spilling out exploded, killing the three on board, an investigation shows.