Photo By Staff Sgt. Jeffrey Barone | Louisiana Air National Guardsman Master Sgt. Troy Fontenot, a crew chief with the 159th Fighter Wing, Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, inspects aileron movement of an F-15C fighter aircraft during an operational readiness inspection on the 159 FW flightline at Naval Air Station - Joint Reserve Base New Orleans, La., April 17.
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BELLE CHASSE, La. – Approximately 87 inspectors from the Air Force's Air Combat Command awarded the Louisiana National Guard's 159th Fighter Wing a rating of "Excellent" on their Operational Readiness Inspection held April 16-18.
On April 21, the ACC Chief announced the results of the inspection to a room erupting with applause, as commanders stood and gave standing ovations to their Airmen.
"I simply could not be more proud of the Wing," said Col. Roy V. Qualls, commander of the 159th Fighter Wing. "Validation of our combat capability is important, and the Wing performed spectacularly in difficult conditions to prove that we are one of the premier fighter wings in the world."
The Phase II ORI is designed to evaluate a unit's ability to employ and support combat missions and the members' ability to survive and operate in a simulated chemically contaminated environment.
"The preparation over the past 18 months really prepared us for this inspection," said Tech. Sgt Glenda Taylor, knowledge operation manager. "I felt very nervous about the inspection but confident in our ability."
The inspection team gave the wing 48 flying missions in a 48 hour period to be accomplished in a simulated combat environment. The taskings included launching and recovering jets under adverse conditions both during day and evening hours.
Not only was every mission launched but the pilots completed their missions with a 100 percent success rate.
"This will be one of the most memorable events of your career. Celebrate," said Brig. Gen. Brod Veillon, assistant adjutant general-air.
Approximately 900 Airmen worked 12 or more hours each day of the three-day inspection.
The wing also scored an "Excellent" rating on their Phase I Operational Readiness Inspection in March 2008.
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BELLE CHASSE, LA, US
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