Gov. Ralph Northam Friday welcomed a decision by the United States Air Force to permanently locate the F-22 Raptor formal training unit at Joint Base Langley-Eustis. The rebasing of the unit will include relocating more than 31 F-22 and 16 other training aircraft, along with an estimated 700 skilled military and civilian personnel and contractors, and approximately 1,600 dependents.
In a news release, the governor said: “There is no place that welcomes service members more warmly than the Hampton Roads region. Langley-Eustis is the right choice, with the ideal environment to achieve the maintenance and supply efficiencies that are critical to successful F-22 squadron training. This move is good for the Air Force and the Langley-Eustis community.”
In 2019, Northam joined Virginia’s bipartisan congressional delegation and General Assembly members in urging the Air Force to select Langley-Eustis as the new home for the F-22 training unit. The jets were displaced from Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida because of Hurricane Michael. Langley Air Force Base is home to the Virginia Air National Guard 192nd Fighter Wing, which flies the F-22 Raptors.
Bruce Sturk, director of federal facilities for Hampton, said: “We’re extremely excited and looking forward to welcoming the Airmen and their families. We’ve been working closely with LAFB for the past couple of years helping identify community-related amenities, etc., to accommodate the additional mission at the installation. This shows the Air Force is committed to Virginia, Hampton Roads, and Hampton.”
go online to read the full news release from the governor.