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Air Force Plans Close-Air Support Transition With A-10 Retirement; John Roth Quoted

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John Roth
John Roth Acting USAF Secretary

The Department of the Air Force plans to begin retiring older A-10 Warthog aircraft units and transfer close air support and rescue missions from Nellis AF Base in Nevada to Davis-Monthan AFB in Arizona starting next fiscal year.

The military branch said Wednesday the transition effort is included in the department's fiscal year 2022 budget request and contingent on Congress' approval of the A-10 retirement proposal.

“This realignment will consolidate all A-10 and HH-60 test, training, and weapon school activity at one location, allowing Airmen in these mission areas to train together for future threats," John Roth, acting secretary of the Air Force.

Roth added that the Air Force wants to transform Davis-Monthan into the branch's center of excellence for close air support and rescue operations.

The plan involves the transfer of A-10 Thunderbolt II and HH-60 Pave Hawk aircraft squadrons, one maintenance team and all supporting personnel after requisite environmental analyses are completed.

Boeing secured a potential 11-year, $999M contract in August 2019 to manage the production of up to 112 wing sets and spare kits for the Thunderbolt Advanced Continuation Kitting program.

The service noted that Nellis AFB will receive Lockheed Martin-built F-35 jets to support fighter aircraft operational tests and additional F-35A and F-22 units from other military bases.