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Military

Fighter training in Turkey helps more than just pilots

by Airman 1st Class Tom Kennedy
Detachment 7, Air Force News Agency


2/8/2007 - INCIRLIK AIR BASE, Turkey (AFNEWS) -- Fighting Falcons are flying over Turkey as Airmen of the 22nd and 23rd Fighter Squadrons from Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, conducting rotational deployment training.

Accompanying the fighter squadrons are members of several Spangdalhem AB units charged with keeping the F-16 Fighting Falcon flying.

Second Lt. Justin Hickey of the 22nd FS Aircraft Maintenance Unit said the deployment showed him the importance of the jobs of the ground crews.

"It takes every part of a machine to run properly," Lieutenant Hickey said. "Even though there are many people ... behind the scenes, they're working just as hard to make sure every jet gets in the air -- people like the crew chiefs, weapons Airmen, egress and fuels and all the people who play integral roles."

In addition to operations training, the deployment allowed many pilots to earn upgrades and gave other Airmen a chance to get accustomed to living and working in a deployed environment. The rotational squadron deployment wraps up in early March.



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