Alaska Raptor Unit Gets New Flagship

After receiving final tests and touches at Hill AFB, Utah, three of the last few F-22s built at Lockheed Martin’s plant in Marietta, Ga., arrived at JB Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska. One of the Raptors—aircraft No. 4190—promptly assumed its place as the 90th Fighter Squadron’s new flagship, replacing aircraft 4090 in that role, during a dedication ceremony on March 7. From now on, “whenever we go somewhere—that jet goes with us,” said 90th FS Commander Lt. Col. Joseph Kunkel. “Instead of there being a simple tail number, it’s going to have ’90th Fighter Squadron,’ so when we roll into town, everyone knows who we are,” he added. The 90th FS is one of two F-22 squadrons at the joint base, along with the 525th FS. Lockheed Martin is slated to deliver the Air Force’s 187th and final F-22 to the 525th FS in May. (Elmendorf-Richardson report by David Bedard) (See also The Last Raptor from Air Force Magazine’s February issue.)