ROYAL AIR FORCE LAKENHEATH, England --
The 48th Fighter Wing activated the 492nd and 494th Fighter Generation Squadrons replacing the 48th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron during a ceremony held Oct. 21, 2022, at RAF Lakenheath, England.
The activation of the new fighter generation squadrons aligns with the U.S. Air Force’s new Combat Oriented Maintenance Organization (COMO) structure, aimed to transition aircraft maintenance units into smaller fighter generation squadrons to improve synchronization between the fighter squadron and the combat components of maintenance and operations.
“A fighter generation squadron is composed of maintainers responsible for the generation of safe and reliable aircraft,” said Col Joseph Stangl, 48th Maintenance Group commander. “ Each fighter generation squadron will be paired with their respected fighter squadron. They will work very closely together to ensure their Airmen and their aircraft are ready for effective, swift and sustained employment.”
During the ceremony, Maj. Steve Ortner relinquished command of the 48th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron and assumed command of the newly formed 494th Fighter Generation Squadron.
“I'm truly honored and humbled and excited to be standing up here and it's a privilege to be your commander,” said Ortner. “Your success is my primary focus. We will continue to be successful in rapidly employing and sustaining combat air power. We will be vigilant and ready at a moment's notice to answer the nation's call.”
Additionally, Maj. Nathan Stroupe assumed command of the newly formed 492nd FGS during the ceremony.
“It's an absolute honor and privilege to join you in this extremely busy and chaotic time,” said Stroupe. “Make no mistake, this is the greatest strike unit on this planet.”
The activation of the 492nd and the 494th FGS is intended to offer squadrons increased control of their assets to meet their mission and manpower requirements and allow commanders to set squadron priorities to meet the needs of their Airmen.