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Congresswoman Sewell Visits 187th Fighter Wing

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Jared Rand
  • 187 FW Public Affairs
Congresswoman Terri A. Sewell visited the 187th Fighter Wing January 21, 2016. The visit was a chance for the wing and the 117th Air Refueling Wing from Birmingham to demonstrate their capabilities.

Congresswoman Sewell rode along on a familiarization flight with Colonel Randal Efferson, 187th Fighter Wing Commander, in one of the 187th's F-16 aircraft. She also got to experience an in-flight refueling when they met up with a KC-135R Stratotanker from the 117th.

"I thought it was great that she was able to see both units in action," said Colonel Efferson after the flight. "I don't think it brought home what each of our capabilities are until she saw us both out there. That's the state of Alabama represented in these two Guard units and two wings that are such national capabilities."

The 187th Fighter Wing and the 117th Air Refueling Wing are looking towards new missions in the future, and both wings are located in Congresswoman Sewell's 7th Congressional District. Following her flight, Sewell expressed confidence in the future of the Alabama Air National Guard.

"I think (the future is) limitless," she remarked. "I think that the real fight will be to try to secure the resources you need to continue to grow. Our job is to fight like mad during the appropriations process... and to make sure that we as a delegation are squarely behind all of the efforts to bring those resources to Alabama."

Colonel Efferson was also optimistic after talking with the Congresswoman. "It's nice to be something that all Democrats and Republicans agree on," he said. "The support we've gotten for our future mission is, I think, unmatched by any other state."

The visit from Congresswoman Sewell was a chance for her to learn a little more about the Alabama Air National Guard. After she landed she gave an enthusiastic review of the flight: "It was awesome. The word is awesome."

For photos from the flight and visit, see the 187th Fighter Wing Facebook page.