The 376th Air Expeditionary Wing recently inactivated its medical group and aircraft maintenance squadron as part of its activities to vacate the Transit Center at Manas, Kyrgyzstan, by July. The 376th Expeditionary Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, which was responsible for maintaining the center’s resident KC-135 tankers and transient C-17 airlifters, stood down on March 29 after 12 years at Manas. “Our maintainers have led the way to ensure every launch was successful and every recovery was just as quick,” racking up a 99.8 percent sortie-generation rate, stated 376th AEW Commander Col. John Millard in a wing release. The wing’s 376th Expeditionary Medical Group inactivated in a ceremony at Manas on April 5. The center served as the main stopover for medical evacuation flights from Afghanistan to Germany. In its final year of operation, the medical group treated 12,700 patients, aided 87 aeromedical evacuations, and responded to 85 “ambulatory requests,” according to a separate 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.