Mildenhall Tankers Maintain Exceptionally High Op Tempo

The 100th Air Refueling Wing at RAF Mildenhall, Britain, is on pace to reach 144 percent of its scheduled flying hours during the first six months of the year, Col. Kenneth Bibb told Air Force Magazine on June 9. “We’re at an exceptionally high operational tempo this year,” said Bibb, who leads the wing, the Air Force’s only permanently assigned aerial refueling unit in Europe. “To only have one flying squadron and one maintenance unit, it’s an incredible pace to keep up with current operations, but it’s also an exciting time to be part of the operation,” he said. Of the wing’s 15 KC-135s, two are deployed to Italy, two are in Spain, and one is operating in Poland. Unit airmen also just got back from Iceland, where they were supporting the Icelandic air policing mission (see below). “We have some of the best airmen in the Air Force. They have a can-do attitude and they look for ways to say ‘yes,’” said Bibb. “Right now, there are a lot of airmen doing more with less and making things happen, but yes, there is some stress that comes with that,” he said.