HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah — Tech. Sgt. Lance Dooley, a crew chief in the 466th Aircraft Maintenance Unit, prepares to crawl inside the intake of an F-35 Lightning II to perform a post-flight inspection during a recent unit training assembly.
Reservists in the
419th Fighter Wing train
at least one weekend a month and two weeks per year to remain ready to deploy, which includes crucial maintenance on
On UTA weekends, one jet can fly up to twice a day, and maintainers perform post-flight inspections each time they land to ensure there is no damage to the aircraft and that all systems are functioning properly.
Dooley has served in the military for 15 years, racking up experience on a number of aircraft. He spent eight years in the U.S. Navy working on the F/A-18 aircraft, and also worked on the C-17 his first year in the Air Force. He has spent the last six years as a reservist with the 419th, and was part of the transition from the F-16 to the F-35 at Hill.
“One of my favorite things about being a reservist is sharing my knowledge with new Airmen,” Dooley said. “I love being able to train the young guys and help them progress in their careers.”