Strike Eagle Honored

Members of the 335th Fighter Squadron at Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C., hosted a ceremony in honor of their flagship F-15E airplane: the Air Force’s first F-15 of any type to surpass 10,000 total flight hours. Aircraft 487 reached this milestone in January during a show-of-force flight over Afghanistan. The airmen gathered on Dec. 7 to commemorate the achievement, according to a Dec. 13 base release. Representatives from F-15E contractor Boeing and Atlantic Models presented the squadron with a scaled model of this Strike Eagle for the event. Capt. Ryan Bodenheimer, a 335th FS pilot who was in the cockpit when the fighter hit 10,000 flight hours, said this achievement reflects upon “the dedication and commitment” of airmen. He noted that it would not have been possible “without the hard work of our maintainers.” Aircraft 487 was commissioned on Nov. 13, 1990, and has served in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan as far back as the first Gulf War, states the release. Currently, this F-15E has more than 10,440 flying hours in some 4,240 sorties, along with a lifetime mission-capable rate of 83.2 percent, according to the release. (Seymour Johnson report by A1C Gino Reyes)