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053013 - 104th Fighter Wing to relocate flying operations to Westover Air Reserve Base and Otis Air National Guard Base during the summer

Release Number: 010513

During the scheduled runway construction at Barnes Air National Guard Base this summer, the unit's F-15 operations will be split between the 102nd Intelligence Wing in Cape Cod and the 439th Air Reserve Wing in Chicopee Mass.

The 104th Fighter Wing will maintain its alert posture within the existing alert-infrastructure at Cape Cod while the training missions will fly out of Westover Air Reserve Base.

"We anticipate approximately twelve F-15s will be based at Westover as we complete our construction projects here at Barnes," said Col. James Keefe, 104th Fighter Wing Commander. "Operating our training missions out of Westover Air Reserve Base will allow us to maintain our proficiency, while we maintain our alert posture at Otis."

As previously announced, some of the 104th Fighter Wing members and aircraft will simultaneously operate the alert mission from the Cape, utilizing some of the preexisting infrastructure that was left in place following the F-15s transition to Westfield in 2008.

The expected runway repair time is 4-6 months, beginning this summer. The jets are expected to return to Barnes at the end of this calendar year.

"Westover is glad to support the 104th Fighter Wing by hosting some of their F-15Cs for as long as necessary," said Col. Steven Vautrain, 439th Airlift Wing Commander. "In these times of austerity, we're glad to make every effort to be a Total Force partner and keep operating costs as low as possible."


The 104th Fighter Wing is equipped with the F-15 Eagle. One mission of the 104th is Aerospace Control Alert (ACA), providing armed fighters ready to scramble in a moment's notice to protect the Northeast from any airborne threat. The unit is responsible for protecting a quarter of the nation's population and one third of the Gross Domestic Product.