Governor Ivey Applauds Decision to Choose 187th Fighter Wing as Home for the New F-35
MONTGOMERY – Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson announced on Thursday that the Alabama Air National Guard’s 187th Fighter Wing has been chosen as a home for the new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Jet.
“I am thrilled and very pleased that the 187th Fighter Wing has been chosen as the home for the new F-35 fighter jet,” Governor Ivey said. “This announcement is huge for the River Region, it is huge for Alabama and is certainly a welcome gift for us as we approach Christmas. The decision to send the F-35 to Montgomery is a testament to the quality of our people and our workforce, and further cements Alabama’s reputation as the leading aerospace state in the nation.”
The F-35 is the military’s latest fighting machine and will eventually replace many Cold War-era fighter planes, which are currently in use. The 187th Fighter Wing of the Alabama Air National Guard currently includes a squadron of F-16 fighter jets, a combat communications group, an RC-26 reconnaissance aircraft squadron, and an eagle vision unit. The 187th was one of five Air National Guard units on the short list to receive the F-35.
“The Alabama Air National Guard is dedicated to excellence in protecting both our state and nation,” Alabama Adjutant General Sheryl Gordon commented. “We look forward to adding the F-35 to our slate of tools available to enable us to carry out our mission.”
“Lots of people were involved in this effort and are to be commended for landing the F-35 in Alabama. I appreciate the work of our entire congressional delegation, especially Senator Shelby, Senator Strange, and Representative Roby. I am also thankful for the hard work and dedication of our state and local partners including Major General Gordon, Commerce Secretary Greg Canfield, Montgomery Mayor Todd Strange, Montgomery County Commission Chairman Elton Dean and the Chamber of Commerce.”
Once production is concluded, the 187th Fighter Wing will receive the F-35 as a replacement of the F-16.