A Boon to “Overall Tactical Competency”:

The F-22A Raptor sojourn to Kadena AB, Japan, proved beneficial for the pilots and maintainers from Langley AFB, Va., and the Pacific region forces they worked with, according to Lt. Col. Wade Tolliver, 27th Fighter Squadron commander. He told the Daily Report, “All in all, the flying and training the 27th FS did on this deployment increased the overall tactical competency and proficiency of all the pilots as well as the maintainers involved.” The Raptors typically flew 80 sorties a week, and Tolliver said the support provided by 18th Wing at Kadena was “outstanding” and provided the opportunity to expose more airmen to the F-22, so that “when the time comes to employ for real, we will not be working together for the very first time.” The 93-day deployment, which began the first week of February, included integrated training with Navy and Marine Corps F-18s, EA-6Bs, and AV-8s, as well as USAF F-15s and Japanese Air Self Defense Force assets. Tolliver noted that the Japanese airmen “were very interested to see for themselves how well the F-22 does in flight.”