WASHINGTON - Congresswoman Kay Granger (R-TX), Lead Republican on the House Appropriations Committee, released the following statement after the U.S. Air Force selected the Air National Guard’s 136th Airlift Wing at Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base (NAS JRB) Fort Worth as the newest location for an Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron.
This follows the Air Force’s recent selection of the 136th Airlift Wing as the future home of new Lockheed Martin C-130J aircraft, which Congresswoman Granger was instrumental in bringing to the base.
“For almost one hundred years, the fine men and women who serve on Fort Worth’s military base installation have demonstrated the skills and experience needed to respond to national security threats, natural disasters, medical emergencies, and more—from supporting America’s fight for freedom in World War II to leading the future of American airpower today.
“Recently, I was proud to successfully lead the fight to replace the 136th Airlift Wing’s aging C-130Hs with advanced C-130Js, which fly faster, higher, and farther with more cargo compared to the older models.
“Today’s announcement from the Air Force selecting the 136th Airlift Wing to additionally receive a new Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron further underlines the Air Force’s strong commitment to the future of NAS JRB Fort Worth and to all of North Texas.
“Seven bases competed for this mission through months of evaluation. The strong existing infrastructure of the NAS JRB Fort Worth made it the preferred choice to receive this new Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron, which are sometimes called ‘flying hospitals,’ capable of providing advanced and time-sensitive medical care between medical treatment facilities.
“My own relationship to our base goes back to my days as the Mayor of Fort Worth, when I led the crusade to preserve the installation by establishing America’s first-ever Joint Reserve Base. I know firsthand that the Citizen Airmen of the 136th Airlift Wing—who have successfully completed missions in virtually every major conflict since the Korean War—are prepared to assume the critical air evacuation role of transporting military personnel and civilians from areas of danger to medical facilities.
“Along with the new C-130Js providing a strong addition to our base’s existing fleet, the new Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron will significantly expand the global mission as well as medical evacuation capabilities of our base’s 136th Airlift Wing.
“I’m proud to see the Air Force recognize the value of our Texas Air National Guard and its exceptional Airmen yet again. I look forward to supporting our Texas Air National Guardsmen as they continue to serve our nation for decades to come.”
“We are honored to add yet another capability to our already robust force,” said Maj. Gen. Tracy R. Norris, the Adjutant General of Texas. “Any time we add medical assets, we know we will be better equipped to help Texas and the nation in their most critical times of need.
Maj. Gen. Norris continued, “We also know that the medical community in the Dallas-Fort Worth area is second to none and will provide an outstanding source of medical professionals as we staff these new positions in the Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron. I also want to thank Congresswoman Granger for her steadfast support of the Texas Army and Air National Guard.”