Missileers spend most of their work shifts 60 feet underground, where they do more than simply wait for the balloon to go up, reports SSgt. Jeremy Larlee. Getting to that hole in the ground for missileers assigned to F.E. Warren AFB, Wyo., may take more than an hour on the road, followed by about 90 minutes of security checks. Two missile officers serve in each underground capsule, while topside at the missile alert facility, there are numerous support and security forces personnel to provide food, maintenance, and protection for the “biggest deterrent in the world,” says TSgt. Paul Bobenmoyer, MAF facility manager.
The Air Force overall reduced its size by 120 aircraft in fiscal year 2021, but kept about the same number of fighter, bomber and attack aircraft, according to data supplied by the service. The F-35 fleet saw the biggest increase while the B-1B bomber fleet saw the largest decline.