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First Alabama ANG F-35 Takes Part In Special Flyover With Red Tail P-51 And F-16Cs

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Alabama ANG
Some screenshots of the video showing the historical formation over Dannelly Field (Image credit: Misael Ocasio Hernandez)

The new Alabama ANG’s F-35 flagship, with a red tail honoring the Tuskegee Airmen legacy, took part in a flyover at Dannelly Field, along with another F-35A, two F-16s and a P-51.

The 187th Fighter Wing of the Alabama ANG, based at Dannelly Field, near Montgomery, has recently been delivered its first three F-35 jets, becoming the third Guard unit to transition to the 5th gen aircraft. Interestingly, the unit applied its traditional red tail on one of the new Lightning II aircraft to honor the Red Tails legacy of the WW2 Tuskegee Airmen, marking the first time an operational U.S. Air Force F-35 has been applied a colored livery, other than the Aggressors’ F-35s at Nellis AFB.

The wing, that formally began the conversion process in March 2023, as pilots and maintainers were embedded in other F-35 units around the country to learn to fly and maintain their new aircraft, has hosted an event on base to unveil its new flagship aircraft on Feb. 9, 2024.

To celebrate the arrival of the new F-35, the Alabama ANG also arranged an amazing flyover featuring two F-35As, including the so far only Lighting II in red tail scheme, two F-16Cs and the Red Tail One P-51 Mustang.

Our friend Misael Ocasio Hernandez shot the historical formation.

The 187th Fighter Wing will receive a total of 20 F-35s over the next five years, with the full operational capability planned for 2026. The Alabama ANG joins the Vermont ANG’s 158th Fighter Wing and Wisconsin ANG’s 115th Fighter Wing as the only Guard units flying the F-35.

David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.

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