Repaired Runway Opens at Barnes

Air National Guardsmen gathered at Barnes ANG Base in western Massachusetts, along with federal, state, and local government officials, to celebrate the re-opening of the runway that the 104th Fighter Wing’s F-15s use. The re-opening ceremony took place on Jan. 31. The base is adjacent to Westfield-Barnes Regional Airport, which shares the runway. “With this newly renovated and fully mission-capable runway at Barnes . . ., the Air Guard will be better able to protect the homeland and fight America’s wars,” said Lt. Gen. Stanley Clarke, ANG director, in the wing’s Feb. 3 release. The renovation was a $21 million project. “This runway project enhances our ability to perform our 24/7 aerospace control alert mission . . . to protect the northeastern United States, and our ability to provide military support worldwide,” said Col. James Keefe, 104th FW commander. During the construction, Barnes’ F-15s operated from Otis ANG Base on Cape Cod and Westover Air Reserve Base near Springfield. (Westfield report by Army Lt. Col. James Sahady)