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203rd Air Refueling Squadron [203rd ARS]

The 203rd Air Refueling Squadron is equipped with KC-135R Stratotanker aircraft which serve to provide worldwide, nonstop air refueling for almost every type of U.S. fixed-wing aircraft.

The mission of the 203rd ARS is to conduct aerial refueling operations in the Pacific theater and be capable of worldwide deployment to augment other theaters of operation.

When political and military tensions built up in Southwest Asia, a KC-135R and guard members from the 203rd Air Refueling Squadron and 154th Logistics Group were deployed to Eielson Air Force Base, AK, to support Operation PHOENIX SCORPION in November 1998.

From late February to April, four KC-135R aircraft from the 203rd Air Refueling Squadron, and over 200 154th maintenance and support guard members deployed to Istres Air Base, France, to participate in Operation DELIBERATE FORGE. As real world hostilities began, the focus turned to Operation ALLIED FORCE. Seventy combat sorties were flown with a 100 percent mission success rate and zero ground/air mishaps or injuries, and over 3.9 million pounds of fuel were transferred to U.S. and NATO aircraft.

The unit took part in exercise RIMPAC 2000, taking place in June 2000.

In February 2001, a KC-135 Stratotanker aircraft from the 203rd provideed assistandce to the the U.S. Department of Defense humanitarian aid airlift to earthquake stricken India. A 203rd KC-135 tanker took off from Hickam Air Force Base (AFB) to refuel the first India-bound C-5 Galaxy cargo aircraft laden with relief supplies. The U.S. Air Force C-5 aircraft had departed Travis AFB, CA, loaded with heavy equipment and other relief supplies needed in the disaster areas.

On February 4, 2003, two KC-135 Stratotankers from the Hawaii ANG's 203rd Air Refueling Squadron re-fueled two Air Combat Command B-1B Lancers over the Pacific Ocean while the bombers finished up an 19-hour, more than 15,000 mile, global power mission.



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