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Team Travis’ KC-10s escort A-10s, F-16s to Red Flag-Alaska

U.S. Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt aircraft line up on the tarmac prior to taking off for Red Flag Alaska 19-2. RF-A is a large-scale exercise headquartered at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. The exercise began June 6 and is scheduled to continue through June 21. (U.S. Air Force courtesy photo)

U.S. Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt aircraft line up on the tarmac prior to taking off for Red Flag Alaska 19-2. RF-A is a large-scale exercise headquartered at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. The exercise began June 6 and is scheduled to continue through June 21. (U.S. Air Force courtesy photo)

A U.S. Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt is refueled by a KC-10 Extender from Travis Air Force Base, California, over the Pacific Ocean. The Thunderbolt was on its way to participate in Red Flag Alaska 19-2, a large-scale exercise headquartered at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. The exercise began June 6 and is scheduled to continue through June 21. (U.S. Air Force courtesy photo)

A U.S. Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt is refueled by a KC-10 Extender from Travis Air Force Base, California, over the Pacific Ocean. The Thunderbolt was on its way to participate in Red Flag Alaska 19-2, a large-scale exercise headquartered at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. The exercise began June 6 and is scheduled to continue through June 21. (U.S. Air Force courtesy photo)

U.S. Air Force KC-10 Extender from Travis Air Force Base, California, flies above A-10 Thunderbolt aircraft over the Pacific Ocean. The Thunderbolts were on their way to participate in Red Flag-Alaska 19-2, a large-scale exercise headquartered at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. The exercise began June 6 and is scheduled to continue through June 21. (U.S. Air Force courtesy photo)

U.S. Air Force KC-10 Extender from Travis Air Force Base, California, flies above A-10 Thunderbolt aircraft over the Pacific Ocean. The Thunderbolts were on their way to participate in Red Flag-Alaska 19-2, a large-scale exercise headquartered at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. The exercise began June 6 and is scheduled to continue through June 21. (U.S. Air Force courtesy photo)

TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Airmen and aircraft from the 60th Air Mobility Wing escorted other U.S. Air Force assets from Japan to Alaska ahead of Red Flag-Alaska 19-2, which began June 6.

Red Flag-Alaska a large-scale field training exercise headquartered at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, designed to provide participants with realistic combat experience in a controlled environment.

Members of the Republic of Korea Air Force, the Japan Air Self-Defense Force, and the Royal Thai Air Force will train alongside their U.S. counterparts temporarily stationed at Eielson and Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, enabling all involved to share tactics, techniques, and procedures and improve bilateral integration.

Several KC-10 Extenders from Travis conducted a coronet mission to get some of the participants there a few days before the start of the exercise.

“We commonly refer to coronets as fighter drags due to the fact that we have the fighters flying with us and we refuel them in air,” said Tech. Sgt. Matthew Smith, 660th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron flying crew chief. “The fighters do not have the ranged needed to fly across the Pacific Ocean without refueling.”

Smith was a part of two KC-10 missions: the first supported four U.S. Air Force A-10 Thunderbolts from Japan to Alaska and the second supported five F-16 Falcons.

Altogether, there were three Travis KC-10s from both the 6th and the 9th Air Refueling Squadrons working together to get 14 to 16 A-10s and 14 to 16 F-16s to Red Flag.

The exercise is scheduled to continue through June 21.

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