HILL AIR FORCE BASE — Col. Lance Landrum relinquished command of the 388th Fighter Wing to Col. Brad Lyons during a change of command ceremony here June 19.
Lt. Gen. Chris Nowland, 12th Air Force and Air Forces Southern commander, presided over the event, at which Team Hill leaders, 388th Airmen, distinguished guests, family and friends gathered to welcome the wing’s new commander.
“Command is a privilege,” Nowland said. “To Karin and Lance — I sincerely thank you for your leadership over this time.”
Nowland described how air power is a critical enabler for the joint force, and how the 388 FW is at the forefront of history as the wing is on the cusp of changing weapon systems.
“We’re a nation at war, and this is a wing of warriors,” Nowland said. “I’d like to the thank the men and women of the 388th Fighter Wing. You’ve done magnificent work over the last two years, and you’ll do magnificent for your new commander as well.”
Landrum told stories of 388th warriors from years past whom he’d met during his tenure as commander, recalling specific tales of heroism of those who have served in the 388 FW. He lauded the tremendous dedication to the mission that 388th Airmen have displayed under his command.
“If we live by our values, we won’t get off the path,” Landrum said. “If we live up to them — every Airman, NCO and senior leader — we’ll inspire loyalty and teamwork. That’s important because our machines won’t work without our Airmen. Nothing inspires me more than our Airmen, and I couldn’t be more proud to be associated with them.”
Lyons has come full circle, as he served as the 34th Fighter Squadron commander from 2009 to 2010. He’ll lead the 388th FW as it transitions to the F-35 Lightning II. Next month, the 34th FS will activate and become the Air Force’s first operational squadron to fly the F-35. The wing will receive its first F-35 this fall.
Lyons said he feels as though he’s coming home, to neighbors, friends, community partners and the mission he loves.
“The 388th truly represents the best the Air Force has to offer,” Lyons said. “This is a special place with a special mission executed by special people. That’s who you are and that’s what you do — I stand here humbled to be a member of this team.”
Landrum and Lyons acknowledged community support and superb Team Hill partnerships as a cornerstone of the 388th’s success.