NEWS | Feb. 28, 2018

U.S. Forces Japan Command Chief Welcomes Japan Air Self-Defense Force F-35A to Misawa

By Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks 35th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan -- The United States Forces Japan and 5th Air Force command chief, Chief Master Sgt. Terrence A. Greene, joined Misawa Air Base leadership in welcoming the first operational Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) F-35A Lightning II during a commemoration ceremony, Feb. 24.

In addition to attending the ceremony, the chief dedicated time with Team Misawa members the day prior emphasizing readiness, welfare and resiliency across all units on the installation.

“I am ecstatic to be here with our Japanese counterparts to help welcome their first fifth-generation aircraft into their fleet,” said Greene. “This visit gave me an opportunity to witness the strong bond shared among U.S. and Japan service members and assure them of their importance to the safety and security across Japan.”

The day before the ceremony, Greene visited U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army and U.S. Navy units and spoke directly with Team Misawa members and received a glimpse of their mission.

“It’s good for everyone who hasn’t met Chief Greene to put a face to his name,” said Staff Sgt. Joseph Ostrowski, the 35th Fighter Wing protocol support staff NCO in charge. “His approachable personality leaves the junior enlisted feeling comfortable to discuss career advice to personal issues at home.”

Among every unit he visited, he gave service members a piece of senior leader advice.

“Being responsible for your finances, family and own resiliency contributes to mission success,” explained Greene. “Lt. Gen. [Jerry] Martinez and I are extremely proud of how Misawa service members conduct their missions and continue building the alliance with our Japanese neighbors. Everything Team Misawa does to build relationships with the local community, helps our ability to thrive and operate here.”

Due to Misawa’s strategic location, it is a prime area for U.S. and Japan flying operations, which contributed to its selection for the first JASDF F-35A unit.

“Remembering the ability to operate by, from and through Japan is key to the alliance we are fortunate to have,” said Greene. “Misawa is crucial to our operations due to its location. The spacious area is perfect for training opportunities and I am impressed with the advances being made here.”

Throughout Greene’s visit, he visited every facet which makes Misawa Air Base a diverse military installation. From the joint to the bilateral aspect, Greene thanked Team Misawa members on their role of maintaining peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region and looks forward to his next visit here.