Valley Congressmen Support 144th Fighter Wing Conversion
By Senior Master Sgt. Chris Drudge, 144th Fighter Wing
/ Published April 01, 2013
3/21/2013-FRESNO AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Calif. -- Col. Clay Garrison, commander of the California Air National Guard's 144th Fighter Wing in Fresno, Calif., released the following statement today in support of a letter to the Secretary of the Air Force, the Honorable Michael Donley, composed by a team of Central Valley congressmen conveying their continued support of the unit's F-15 aircraft conversion:
"The 144th Fighter Wing has a long standing tradition of defending the United States and the great state of California. We appreciate the continuing support of our Congressmen as we move forward with plans to equip our wing for future missions."
The team of Congressmen, Devin Nunes, Jim Costa and David Valadao, drafted the letter to Secretary Donley backing the F-15 Aircraft Conversion for the 144th Fighter Wing at Fresno-Yosemite International Airport (IAP), as well as, how the new aircraft will enhance the wing's Aerospace Control Alert (ACA) mission and their air superiority
mission in support of joint operations around the globe.
The letter also denotes that the result of the Preferred Alternative of the Final Environmental Impact Statement reflects favorably on the conversion of the F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft and operations to the F-15 Eagle aircraft and operations at Fresno-Yosemite IAP.
"The 144th is critical to maintain air superiority in the Southwest, and keeping the F-15 conversion on track will enhance their ability to keep our skies safe," said Rep. Jim Costa, D-Fresno.
The Final EIS states that Fresno-Yosemite IAP "has been determined to be the only geographic location that satisfies the purpose and need... to support the ACA mission due to its central location along the west coast of the U.S."