Wing commander takes final flight at Travis AFB

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Karla Parra
  • 60th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs

TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – U.S. Air Force Col. Corey Simmons, 60th Air Mobility Wing commander, piloted what could be his final flight in a C-17 Globemaster III July 22, 2022, a few days before relinquishing command at Travis Air Force Base, California.

A final flight, also known as a ‘fini flight,’ is an Air Force tradition typically marking an aircrew member’s departure from his or her unit or the last time flying a specific aircraft.

He is unsure whether he will ever have the opportunity to fly a C-17 again.  

“I feel humbled and honored to fly with this team,” Simmons said during his flight.

His morning started in the mission planning room where Lt. Col. Austin Street, 21st Airlift Squadron commander and aircraft commander for the mission, briefed Simmons and the rest of the crew on the day's flight plan before heading to the flight line.

After pre-flight checks and take off, Simmons and crew flew over the Olympic Mountain Range, over the San Juan Islands, passed Mount Rainier, over Mount Hood, above the Three Sisters Volcanos, passed Mount Shasta and finally to San Francisco to fly over the Golden Gate Bridge one more time before Simmons and family moves to Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, next week. 

The ‘fini-flight’ was a dual-purpose mission. While in the air, the 60th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron trained for five hours, honing their skills on aeromedical evacuation processes.

Upon his return to Travis AFB, Simmons was greeted by friends, family and a crowd of Airmen from the wing who celebrated his final flight by hosing him down with water and champagne.

Simmons’ tenure as the 60th AMW commander began July 17, 2020. Upon taking the helm of the largest air mobility organization in the Air Force, he coined the term, “TrUSt Travis,” a phrase embraced by civilians and Airmen across the Travis community.

During a farewell video from Simmons to the Team Travis community, the commander reintegrated his message of “TrUSt” and recognized Travis Airmen for their accomplishments during his two-year tenure.

“Thank you for letting me be part of the team,” said Simmons during the video. “Thank you for reading my notes—buying into what we are trying to do. Thank you for trusting me.

“No matter the call, Team Travis Airmen answer with fierce professionalism and limitless talent, always ready for the fight tonight and prepared for the call tomorrow,” said Simmons during his closing remarks. “Why do I and the nation ‘TrUSt’ Travis? Because you are simply that damn good.”

Simmons will relinquish command July 27th to Col. Derek Salmi, deputy director, Strategy, Concepts and Assessments, Directorate for Logistics (J-4), Joint Staff, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.