Fifteen airmen with assignments at the undisclosed air base in Southwest Asia that hosts the 379th Air Expeditionary Wing are taking advantage of the opportunity to serve there for two years accompanied by family members, according to a release from the wing. The number of airmen doing this is expected to continue growing, with 60 families anticipated there in the next few years, states the wing’s June 3 release. The accompanied tours started in 2011 as part of an initiative called the Command Sponsorship Program. It is meant to increase mission effectiveness, ease burdens on Air Force families, and foster the partnership with the host nation. Families in the program reside off base in the local community, attend local schools, and obtain most goods and services from the local economy, states the release. This air base is also the site of the sole Airman and Family Readiness Center in Air Forces Central Command’s area of responsibility. (379th AEW report by Capt. Angela Webb)
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.