Goodbye, Old Friend

The Hawaii Air National Guard’s 199th Fighter Squadron at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam has completed its final F-15 training mission. The unit is transitioning to F-22s, the first two of which arrived in July. “It’s like saying goodbye to a good friend,” said Lt. Col. James Sage, a 199th FS pilot who last week flew in the final training mission. He added, “It was exciting flying it for the last time, and especially against an F-22, but at the same time, the F-15 has always brought me home safely and [it has] been an outstanding aircraft.” The ANG unit will operate 20 Raptors. “The 199th [FS] proves that National Guard forces are capable of maintaining a strategic presence with its active duty association and providing a great value to our nation,” said Gen. Craig McKinley, National Guard Bureau chief. (Pearl Harbor-Hickam report by TSgt. Cohen A. Young)