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Air Force Officials announce FY15 Force Structure initiatives

BOISE, Idaho -- The U.S. Air Force plans to remove almost 500 aircraft across the inventories of active, reserve and Air National Guard fleets over the next five years.  This includes the entire A-10 inventory, 21 of which fly for the Idaho Air National Guard. Pending congressional approval, the 124th FW at Gowen Field Idaho will be the first ANG unit to start flying the F-15E Strike Eagle.  The proposed transition is scheduled for the FY15 and would likely require approximately two years.  In instances where the ANG had to divest mission aircraft such as the A-10, the ANG proposes replacing existing flying missions with new missions and preserving the majority of the Guard manpower. As a classic associate unit with Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho, the 124th Fighter Wing would have the primary responsibility for the guardsmen assigned and share the aircraft assigned to the 366th FW. Airmen from the Idaho Air National Guard would train to fly, fight, and win alongside active duty personnel as part of the Total Force Initiative that partners active-duty and reserve component units for a single mission. "With the Air Force's announcement this week that it will divest itself of the A-10 mission next year, we are standing by to see exactly what that means for the Idaho Air National Guard," said Idaho Air National Guard Commander Brig. Gen. Michael Nolan. "There are many details to work out over the coming months, and one of the issues that will require detailed planning will be a close association between Idaho ANG and our active-duty partners at Mountain Home Air Force Base." "This association will be a continuation of the partnership two organizations have always maintained as we uphold the unique identity and heritage of the Idaho Air National Guard. While we are proud of our successes operating and maintaining the A-10 Warthog since 1996, we look forward to the new partnership with Mountain Home Air Force Base and taking on the new mission of the F-15E Strike Eagle," Brig. Gen. Nolan said. "This is a great opportunity for Idaho Air National Guardsmen," said Col. Sherrie McCandless, Commander of the 124th Fighter Wing.  "We have the opportunity to remain relevant participants in our nation's readiness by flying the F-15E, one of our military's preeminent multi-role combat aircraft," she said. Related story at Mountain Home AFB site: http://www.mountainhome.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123403514