Tennessee Air National Guard C-5 Galaxy maintainers are training with C-17 technicians at JB Lewis-McChord, Wash., in preparation for the Tennesseans’ transition to the Globemaster III. “Our goal is to help them reach ‘operational status’ and perform real-world missions for the Air Force,” said SMSgt. Mark Cherrix, a superindendent with Air Force Reserve Command’s 446th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron at McChord, in a Sept. 5 base release. “I have no doubt they will leave McChord better equipped,” he added. A dozen Tennessee Air Guardsmen from the 164th AMXS are currently at McChord learning “to perform hands-on tasks so we can return to our home station and train other crew chiefs on the C-17 systems,” explained crew chief MSgt. Todd Jones. The 164th Airlift Wing at Memphis ANG Base is slated to receive eight C-17s to replace its current C-5A fleet next fiscal year. (McChord report by TSgt. Elizabeth Moody)
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.