B-2 Reaches 7,000 Flight Hours

The B-2 Spirit of Florida, stationed at Whiteman AFB, Mo., became the first B-2 to reach 7,000 flight hours, according to a base release. The aircraft hit the milestone during a mission on April 1, according to Whiteman’s April 4 release. “This achievement is a testament to the men and women” of Whiteman’s 509th Bomb Wing and the Air National Guard’s 131st BW “who take a vested interest in the B-2 mission every day,” said Lt. Col. Michael Pyburn, commander of the 131st Operations Group. There are 20 B-2s in the Air Force’s inventory. “We take a lot of pride in keeping our B-2s airworthy,” said SSgt. Ken Sedgwick, a crew chief with the 13th Aircraft Maintenance Unit. He noted that Spirit of Florida was also the first B-2 to reach the 5,000-hour mark in May 2007 and then the 6,000-hour mark in January 2010. A few days prior to the 7,000-hour milestone, two B-2s from Whiteman flew more than 6,500 miles to South Korea to drop inert bombs at a training range. (Whiteman report by SrA. Brigitte N. Brantley)