The Big 4K

Lt. Col. Robert Sandford, an F-22 pilot with Virginia Air National Guard’s 192nd Fighter Wing at Langley AFB, Va., on May 17 surpassed 4,000 total flight hours in his career. He is currently chief of standardization and evaluation for the Air Guard unit, which operates F-22s together with Langley’s active duty 1st FW. He was commissioned in the Air Guard in 1986 and formerly flew A-7s and F-16s. “I never set out to amass thousands of hours, I just love to fly,” he said, commenting on his milestone. He added, “I’m very fortunate that I’ve been able to do what I love all these years.” Sandford says he plans to keep flying F-22s “as long as possible.” He recently volunteered for a deployment of Langley F-22s to Guam. “I’m going to stay until they kick me out,” he said, laughing. (Langley report by A1C Jason J. Brown)