Yokota spouses take incentive CV-22 flight

  • Published
  • By SrA Brooklyn Golightly
  • 353rd Special Operations Wing with 374th Airlift Wing support

Military spouses flew over Tokyo via CV-22 Osprey, from Yokota Air Base, Japan May 12. The experience provided the opportunity to show gratitude to the spouses of team Yokota.

The 353rd Special Operations Wing with 374th Airlift Wing support, provided flights on the CV-22 to showcase the Pacific Air Forces mission capabilities.

The incentive flights gave spouses the opportunity to see what America's ‘Air Commandos of the Pacific’ do to integrate throughout the theater, giving insight into the mission that drives the daily sacrifices made to support their service members.

“Our military spouses are the backbone of our force,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Tyler Oldham, 21st Special Operations Squadron commander. “They work tirelessly to provide stability and strength for our service members, and they really can't be thanked enough. By providing these flights, we were able to show them exactly how their selfless service directly enables mission success. I would like to thank all Yokota spouses for their sacrifices and support.”

Every spouse on the installation–home to the 374th Airlift Wing, Fifth Air Force, and U.S. Forces Japan–was invited to participate. Over 200 spouses rushed to sign up for the opportunity to fly on the Osprey, and even more got to experience the CV-22 simulator.

“We want to give a small token of our appreciation back to our spouses,” said U.S. Air Force Col. Scott Giller, 353rd Special Operations Wing vice commander. “[We want] to say thank you for all the sacrifices that they make every day and the great support they give. [And for] knowing that we can go to work every day as military members at ease because our home life is secure and we're able to execute our nation's taskings at any time or any place.”

Participants received a briefing on the capabilities of the CV-22 and safety procedures, then took a 30-minute flight over Tokyo and down the Japan Eastern coastline.

“I think there's a level of attachment that our spouses develop for the mission, and to be able to have tangible access to this very unique opportunity, I think is very meaningful for most spouses,” said Oldham. “So whenever it does get hard, the nights are long, or their spouses are on the road for an extended period of time, they understand what their military spouse contributes toward and works so hard to provide. They are enabling that mission to be successful.”