The transition of the 33rd Fighter Wing will become more "real" when the unit's last F-15 departs Sept. 8 for a final destination in Tucson, Ariz.
Col. Todd Harmer, 33rd FW commander, will fly the last of 52 aircraft that were under his tenure when he took leadership of the Nomads in January 2008.
"It's bittersweet knowing that once I'm airborne, it's the end of the Eagle's 30-year association with the 33rd Figher Wing, and the ramp will sit empty until the F-35s arrive next year," he said. "Commanding the Nomads has been an honor and I'm proud to have been a part of a unit with such an incredible record including MiG kills in Desert Storm to sorties supporting Operation Noble Eagle. The professionalism of our Airmen, our proud heritage and reputation will surely follow through in each Nomad's career."
The last Eagle will be nested at Air Force Material Command's 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group in Tucson, a one-of-a-kind specialized facility that provides critical capabilities for Joint and Allied/Coalition warfighters in support of global operations and agile combat support for a wide range of military operations."As we pass the torch from Air Combat Command to Air Education and Training Command Oct. 1, every pilot who flies the F-35 Lightening II, whether an American or a coalition partner, will carry on the Nomad tradition," Harmer said.