199th Fighter Squadron [199th FS]
The 199th Fighter Wing is a unit of the 154th Wing under the Hawaii Air National Guard. The 199th Fighter Squadron is a reverse associate Unit with the 19th Fighter Squadron. They operate the F-22 Raptor, the Air Force's 5th generation fighter aircraft. Its combination of stealth, supercruise, maneuverability and integrated avionics, coupled with improved supportability, represents an exponential leap in warfighting capabilities. The Raptor performs both air-to-air and air-to-ground missions allowing full realization of operational concepts vital to the 21st-century Air Force.
The 199th Fighter Squadron was previously equipped with F-15 A/B Eagle aircraft which serve to provide interceptor capability for the state's air defense system. The 199th is also tasked with augmenting the active duty U.S. Air Force with air superiority fighters during war or other contingencies.
The Hawaii Air National Guard was created on Nov 4, 1946, with the 199th Fighter Squadron first flying war surplus P-47 Thunderbolts that were designated “F-47”. The HIANG’S Officila Birthday is Sept 18, 1947, when the USAF was formally established as a separate branch of service. The P-47s, (designated F-47s), were in Hawaii Air Guard service until 1953 and then the first “jet fighter” (F-86L Saber) came to the 199th Fighter Squadron, eventually to be replaced by the F-102 – as the Cold War was in full swing. In April 1999, the 199th Fighter Squadron deployed four F-15s, 12 pilots, and 58 maintenance and support members to support the NATO alert operations at Keflavik Naval Air Station in Iceland.
On Aug. 6, 2010, the Montana Air National Guard's 186th Fighter Squadron from the 120th Fighter Wing based in Great Falls, gave the Hawaii Air National Guard's 199th FS a "breather" as they transitioned from the F-15 Eagle to the F-22 Raptor. Since then, the 199th FS worked to posture itself to retake the mission, with the help of a total force integration partnership with the recently stood-up 19th FS owned and operated by active duty Airmen of the 15th Wing.
F-15 Eagles from the Hawaii Air National Guard's 199th Fighter Squadron completed their last training mission from Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii on 25 Aug 2010. The HIANG was upgrading to the F-22 Raptor, a fifth generation fighter and received their first two Raptors in July 2010. The Guard is the lead in a "Total Force" concept that already exists at Hickam with the C-17 Globemaster III. The 19th FS, 15th Air Wing will fly and help maintain the 20 F-22 Raptors that bring another capability to the HIANG as well as the U.S. Air Force.
Many of the current F-15 pilots of the HIANG were eager to start training and flying the Raptor, but still sorely missed the Eagle aircraft, which the unit has flown since 1987.
The three remaining F-15's took off on Sept. 1 and with that two of the fighters moved onto the 56th Aggressors Squadron at Nellis AFB, Nev., while the other moved onto the 120th Fighter Wing of the Montana Air National Guard. The Montana unit assumed the HIANG's air defense mission for the next year as the HIANG transitions to the F-22.
F-22 Raptor pilots from the 19th and 199th Fighter Squadrons brought home a familiar mission 06 December 2012 when they retook the responsibility of guarding Hawaii's skies through the Aerospace Control Alert mission.
To fulfill the ACA mission, the squadrons had pilots, maintainers, and weapons crews on call 24/7 ready to respond at a moment's notice against threats to the Hawaiian Islands. The squadrons and the aircraft they operate were considered "initially operationally capable," meaning they are fully qualified and manned to fulfill alert requirements as well as Pacific Command objectives to deploy anywhere worldwide with a limited number of assets.
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