Reservist Hits 6,500 Hours Flight Hours

SMSgt. Ray Lewis, a boom operator assigned to Air Force Reserve Command’s 18th Refueling Squadron at McConnell AFB, Kansas, recently passed 6,500 flying hours during his 1,500th mission. “I still get excited each time I’m scheduled to go fly,” said Lewis in a May 23 release. “It’s been that way ever since the first time I did an air refueling mission, back when I was just a 19-year-old kid.” Lewis, who said he has been a reservist for 16 years and flies “roughly four hours a week,” said he feels “lucky” to have been able to fly with the Air Force for so long. “The job is the same, and I treat each sortie the same, but at this point the writing is on the wall—I’m not going to get to do this forever,” he said. “So I appreciate it just a little more than I did back when I was that 19-year-old kid. Every flight is a blessing, and I just feel lucky to be able to continue to do this.”