The 36th Rescue Flight at Fairchild AFB, Wash., transferred from under the organizational control of the base’s 336th Training Group to the 58th Operations Group at Kirtland AFB, N.M. Despite the shift, the training flight’s mission of providing helicopter support to the Air Force Survival School at Fairchild will not change, said officials in Fairchild’s June 13 release. “I am confident that this transfer of authority will be transparent to the members of the 336th TRG and the 36th RQF as well as the students that we train and support,” said Col. William Thomas, 336th TRG commander. The Fairchild group is the Air Force’s sole unit responsible for training survival, evasion, resistance, escape, or SERE, specialists. “The change was basically a cost-saving measure,” said Maj. Matthew Johnson, 36th RQF commander. He added, “The 36th RQF has proven itself indispensable to the survival school mission and will continue to do so in the future.” The transfer-of-authority ceremony was on June 7. (Fairchild report by SrA. Benjamin Stratton)
The Air Force overall reduced its size by 120 aircraft in fiscal year 2021, but kept about the same number of fighter, bomber and attack aircraft, according to data supplied by the service. The F-35 fleet saw the biggest increase while the B-1B bomber fleet saw the largest decline.