The first of eight C-17s destined to replace the C-5As of the New York Air National Guard’s 105th Airlift Wing landed Monday at Stewart ANG Base in Newburgh. “It’s sad to see the C-5As go, but it’s the right thing for the future of the base,” said Brig. Gen. Verle Johnston, 105th AW commander, reported the Hudson Valley Times Herald-Record. Stewart will officially mark the transition to the Globemaster in an acceptance ceremony on Aug. 6. The wing currently operates a fleet of 13 C-5s that will gradually phase out as crews transition to the C-17 over the next two years. “It’s a beautiful airplane. It’s a breath of fresh air,” remarked SMSgt. John Sheehy, a 105th AW crew chief, who flew on the C-17 on its delivery flight from Charleston AFB, S.C. Lower maintenance requirements will likely mean workforce cuts to a sizable portion of the wing’s maintenance division, according to the Times Herald-Record. (Includes Stewart release)
U.S. Air Force F-35s and F-22s regularly deploy deep into the Pacific region from Alaska, Utah, and Hawaii. In the future, though, the head of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command would like to see the Air Force permanently station fifth-generation aircraft west of the international date line—closer to China.