SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vermont –
The first two of 20 F-35A Lightening II fighter jets are scheduled to arrive in Burlington on Thursday, September 19. The 158th Fighter Wing will be the first National Guard unit to field the F-35A.
"This is such an exciting time for the 158th Fighter Wing, and we are looking forward to sharing it with the community,” said Col. David Smith, commander, 158th Fighter Wing. “Two Green Mountain Boy pilots are flying them to Vermont from Fort Worth, Texas, and they can’t wait. We have all worked very hard to prepare for this moment, and I assure you our Airmen are ready.”
There have been over 420 aircraft delivered to 12 different countries at 19 different bases worldwide. The F-35 has over 205,000 flight hours. More than 850 pilots and over 8,120 maintainers are trained on the F-35 airframe.
“The outstanding legacy of the Vermont Air National Guard is on full display, and we couldn’t be prouder of our Airmen,” said Brig. Gen. Greg Knight, adjutant general, Vermont National Guard. “It’s been a long time coming, and we are thrilled to welcome the F-35 to Vermont. Now, we can get to work on our own Vermont Air National Guard aircraft.”