Sunday, June 02, 2013

315th Airlift Wing accepts Charleston's latest C-17 Globemaster III

by Michael Dukes
315th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

5/30/2013 - JOINT BASE CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Col. James Fontanella, 315th Airlift Wing commander, accepted the ceremonial key to aircraft P-222 from Lt. Gen. Robert R. Allardice, Air Mobility Command vice commander, May 30.

The aircraft is Joint Base Charleston's latest C-17 Globemaster III addition.

"It's really an honor for us to be here today," said Allardice.

The general mentioned many people throughout the C-17 program, everyone from the workers at Boeing out in Long Beach, Calif., to the Soldiers who have chosen the fly the sometimes not so friendly skies around the world with the aircrews from Joint Base Charleston.

"I have the ceremonial key," the general said to Fontanella as he held up the key for all to see. "Jamie, it's an honor for me to present to you the second to last - the 222nd - C-17 of the program."

The colonel took the key and thanked the general:

"Sir this goes without saying that it's really an honor to be here and receive you, and the whole team, to receive the keys to the airplane. Although, this is not just a Joint Base Charleston airplane, it's owned by the taxpayers, and I promise you that we will put it to good use."

He then presented the general a token t-tail placard.

The aircraft was flown from the Boeing assembly facility in Long Beach by aircrew members from the 315th AW. The reservists on the cross-country flight included:

- Lt. Col. Andrew Leone, 315th Mission Support Group;
- Lt. Col. Mark Pool, 300th Airlift Squadron;
- Maj. Brennan McDonald, 300th AS;
- Chief Master Sgt. Gigi Manning, 315th AW;
- Senior Master Sgt. Monica Flores, 300th AS;
- Master Sgt. James Ebert, 701st AS;
- Master Sgt. Chris Fable, 315th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron;
- Staff Sgt. Edward Gonzalez, 317th AS.

Joining them on the flight with Allardice was Lt. Gen. Mark F. Ramsay, Force Structure, Resources and Assessment director for Joint Staff at the Pentagon.

This latest jet is the last C-17 the 315th AW will be accepting on behalf of the 437th Airlift Wing from the Boeing factory.

The C-17 Globemaster III is the most flexible cargo aircraft to enter the airlift force. It is capable of rapid strategic delivery of troops and all types of cargo to main operating bases or directly to forward bases in the deployment area. The C-17 can perform tactical airlift and airdrop missions and can also transport litters and ambulatory patients during aeromedical evacuations when required.

This delivery brings the number of C-17s assigned to the Joint Base Charleston to 52. The Reserve Associate 315th AW and the active-duty 437th AW are mission partners at Joint Base Charleston. The 437th AW owns the base's C-17 fleet.