Lt. Gen. Norman Seip, who has led 12th Air Force (Air Forces Southern) since July 2006, is retiring this summer after a 35-year career in the service, a 12th AF spokesman confirmed Tuesday. There has been no formal announcement yet of his retirement date, the spokesman said. Seip entered the Air Force after graduating from the US Air Force Academy in 1974. He is a command pilot, with more than 4,500 flight hours in aircraft like the F-4, F-14, and F-15. He has commanded two squadrons, an operations group, and a wing, and was an exchange officer with the Navy on board the USS Nimitz. He has also served in key positions during tours with Air Combat Command, the Air Staff, and Joint Staff. From May 2004 to June 2005, Seip was the deputy combined force air component commander for US Central Command. On May 5, Seip flew his final flight—in an F-15—at Mountain Home AFB, Idaho. (Includes Air Force photo caption by A1C Debbie Lockhart)
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.