Fairchild Air Force Base in Spokane, Washington Military Bases

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Fairchild Air Force Base in Spokane, WA Washington Military Bases

 

Named after the honored World War 1 aviator, General Muir Fairchild, FAB or Fairchild Air Base is located in Washington. The exact location is in Spokane. Where the cities around the area were high in competition, Spokane was chosen for the air base for intelligent reasons. There were better weather conditions and was protected by the range of mountains. This mountain range minimized the vulnerability to plausible Japanese attack. The distance from the coast, (480 km) was another prominent factor. Luckily, many businessmen in Spokane contributed heavily to buy the area for building the air depot.

When established first in 1942, it was known as the Gelena Field. It was then renamed as Spokane Air Depot in March; in July it was renamed again: Spokane army airfield being its new name. In 1948, the Spokane Army Airfield became Spokane air force base, and finally in November 1950, it was named Fairchild Air Base.

Prominent Contribution

Fairchild air base has been a great help in all missions of the United States, be it war or humanitarian efforts. One of its missions is air fueling. After the September 11 attacks, it constantly provided air refueling and alert operations as a part of the war on terror operation Nobel Eagle.

Air Refueling Wing

Fairchild Air Base has been the largest air refueling body in the US Air Force. During the war in Vietnam, air refueling became a high demand. At this point Fairchild Air Base made a great contribution to the young Tiger project. A number of combat aircraft was refueled by Fairchild air case.

Furthermore, the air-refueling wing of the Fairchild air base has great records of humanitarian services and SAR projects. Since 2001, the Fairchild air base has a record of saving lives by responding to 50 calls, on average every year, for assistance. Since it was established, the unit has saved more than 600 lives.

Besides its technical contributions and active participations in US missions and operations, the Fairchild air base is important because the extent of medical care available around it. So, in the time of emergency during an operation, the injured are transported to Fairchild Air Base since they can get high quality medical care and trauma rehabilitation in the major hospitals like, Sacred Heart, around it.

Some of the primary units that have been assigned to Fairchild are:

98th Bombardment wing

92th Bombardment wing

99th Strategic reconnaissance group

111th Strategic reconnaissance group

567th Strategic missile squadron

47th Air division

92 Operations group

509 weapons squadron

Joint personnel recovery agency

Major Missiles And Aircrafts Assigned

B-29 Superfortress,

UH-1N Twin Huey 1971-Present 36th Rescue Flight ( AETC)

KC-135 Stratotanker

B-36 Peacemaker,

B-52 Stratofortress,

SM-65E Atlas

Washington at a point had a distinguished number of nuclear resources. Many of these nuclear warheads were stored at the Fairchild child air base. These bombs which included more than 85 nuclear gravity bombs were removed from Fairchild air base in 1990, and a treaty was signed not to introduce such bombs ever again.

Fairchild Air Force Base

 

Location

Fairchild Air Force Base is located approximately 16 miles from the city of Spokane, which has a population of more than 208,000. Spokane is the second-largest city in Washington, offering a variety of amenities that are easily accessible to base residents.

History

Since 1942, Fairchild Air Force Base has been a key part of our nation’s defense strategy—from WWII repair depot, to Strategic Air Command bomber wing during the Cold War, to Air Mobility Command air refueling wing during Operation Iraqi Freedom and beyond. Today, Fairchild’s aircraft and personnel are the backbone of the Air Force’s tanker fleet on the West Coast.

Fairchild’s location, 12 miles west of Spokane, resulted from a competition with the cities of Seattle and Everett in western Washington. The War Department chose Spokane for several reasons: better weather conditions, its location 300 miles from the coast and the Cascades Mountain range providing a natural barrier against possible Japanese attack.

Mission

The 92nd Air Refueling Wing is the host unit to Team Fairchild comprised of the 141st Air Refueling Wing, the 336th Training Group and other tenant organizations. Team Fairchild encompasses more than 5,100 active-duty, Air National Guard, tenant unit members and civilian employees. Another major tenant organization is the Armed Forces Reserve Center, that opened in April 10, comprising approximately 850 Army Guard and Reserve personnel assigned to 18 units with various missions.

Fairchild is the largest employer in Eastern Washington State. The base’s total population exceeds 8,600 with approximately 17,000 retirees in the area representing an annual payroll of $221 million. This brings Fairchild’s annual economic impact on the community to approximately $427 million, constituting 13 percent of the local economy.

Population Served

The 92d Air Refueling Wing is the host unit to Team Fairchild comprised of the 141st Air Refueling Wing, the 336th Training Group and other tenant organizations. Team Fairchild encompasses more than 5,100 active-duty, Air National Guard, tenant unit members and civilian employees. Another major tenant organization is the Armed Forces Reserve Center, that opened in April 10, comprising approximately 850 Army Guard and Reserve personnel assigned to 18 units with various missions.

Fairchild is the largest employer in Eastern Washington State. The base’s total population exceeds 8,600 with approximately 17,000 retirees in the area representing an annual payroll of $221 million. This brings Fairchild’s annual economic impact on the community to approximately $427 million, constituting 13 percent of the local economy.

Base Transportation

Currently, there is no base transportation on this installation.

Sponsorship

Prior to departing your current base or training school, all personnel should be assigned a sponsor. The sponsor provides information and answers any questions about the base, area and your unit, as well as assisting you with your in-processing appointments. For assistance regarding sponsor assignment, contact your gaining unit or call the Fairchild Air Force Base Airman Family & Readiness Center at (509) 247-2246. In-processing is done Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Walk-ins only, appointments not available). In-processing must be accomplished prior to PDTY. You will need to bring your CAC id card and PCS order (with amendments) and your sealed folder from MPS to Customer Service at MPS. You will be provided with a base in-processing checklist and will be scheduled for orientation.

As part of in-processing, attendance is required at the Right Start newcomer orientation and healthy start; these programs focuses on welcoming personnel and their spouses, making the experience a positive one.

If you arrive on base after duty hours, report-in will be the next day. Civilian personnel will report to the Civilian Personnel Office at the MPF. Check with your sponsor for additional instructions.

Temporary Quarters

The 24-hour arrival point is the Lodging Office on base. It is located at 300 N. Short St., and lodging reservations can be made by calling (509) 244-2290, (509) 247-5519 or DSN (312) 657-5519.

There are two facilities for lodging on base; the Fairchild Inn, located on the main base and used by TDY, PCS and Space A, and the Survival Inn, located at the USAF Survival School (for survival students only). Lodging consists of 283 guest rooms and 42 Temporary Lodging Facilities, 17 of which are pet friendly. Personnel unable to secure space in pet-friendly lodging can kennel their animal at Tanker Tails or stay off base. Tanker Tails is a cat and dog kennel located at 9 Sports Range. Call (509) 247-4699 for more information. If there are no reservations available, lodging personnel can assist with finding off-base temporary housing.

Relocation Assistance

Balfour-Beatty Communities is the residential community at Fairchild Air Force Base. It consists of almost 800 homes with various neighborhoods. Renovations and new construction are ongoing, with upgrades and improvements occurring within each neighborhood. Contact Balfour-Beatty Communities at (509) 244-6500.

For single or unaccompanied enlisted members, dormitories are available. Contact the Housing Office at (509) 247-2341 or DSN (312) 657-2341. Personnel should get in touch with housing as soon as possible after receiving orders, by either calling directly or through sponsors.

There is housing available for families requiring special needs, with modifications also available for unoccupied units. Individuals with special needs may move into the next uncommitted unit in the proper grade. Contact Balfour-Beatty Communities for more information.

Wait time for housing can vary from a week to three months. Pet restrictions apply for families seeking housing in the Balfour-Beatty Communities, with a maximum of two pets (dogs or cats) per family and breed restrictions.

There are also off-base rentals, apartments and houses available. Spokane County has a good variety of housing, with communities such as Airway Heights, Cheney, Medical Lake and Spokane all nearby. Military members must check with the Housing Referral Office prior to seeking off-base accommodations.

Critical Installation Information

Living in Eastern Washington means enjoying four seasons with temperate and usually mild weather. Summer temperatures range from the mid 60s upwards into the 80s. Winter may bring rain, fog or snow. December is the coldest month, with an average overnight temperature of 21.6 F and August is the warmest, with day time temperatures averaging 82.6 F.

Preparing for a personal property move can be daunting. Get a jump on things by sorting through keepsakes, having yard sales or donating items as soon as you are notified of your upcoming PCS. The majority of personal property shipments are now done utilizing the Defense Personal Property System (DPS). Any member moving will need to register for a DPS account. This can be done by going to the http://www.move. mil website, which you can also access via the AF Portal. The majority of members will be able to “self-counsel” in DPS, or come to the personal property office and utilize the cyber café set up to assist members with a “proctored self-counseling”.

If you are relocating with pets, visit your veterinarian prior to leaving and make sure they are up-to-date on all vaccinations. Obtain a health certificate if your vet recommends it, and discuss any potential hazards or concerns in regards to travel. If you choose to ship your pet to Fairchild, find out the specific restrictions and regulations that apply to the airline you choose, as well as cost. Pet travel costs are not reimbursed but can be tax-deductible.

You must have a valid driver’s license and sufficient insurance coverage to legally drive a vehicle in Washington state. In addition to automobiles, this includes motorcycles, RVs, trailers and boats. You must also register your vehicle.

Personal firearms must be registered within three days of arrival at the base at the 92nd Security Forces Squadron Armory and stored there if necessary. Dorm residents may not keep firearms in the dorms at any time, nor may privately owned weapons be carried on a person or in a vehicle. Personnel inhabiting military housing are authorized to keep their firearms in their homes, provided they are unloaded and kept in a locked container.