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‘Talons out’ as 355th FS flies first official FHP sorties

An F-35A Lightning II assigned to the 355th Fighter Squadron flies over Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021.

An F-35A Lightning II assigned to the 355th Fighter Squadron flies over Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021. As one of the 354th Fighter Wing’s F-35A units, the 355th FS bolsters the 354th wing’s transition to a combat-coded mission, doubling U.S. Pacific Air Forces’ F-35A combat capability. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jose Miguel T. Tamondong)

An F-35A Lightning II assigned to the 355th Fighter Squadron (FS) takes off from Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021.

An F-35A Lightning II assigned to the 355th Fighter Squadron (FS) takes off from Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021. Also known as the ‘Fighting Falcons,’ the 355th FS is one of Eielson’s two combat-coded F-35A squadrons. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jose Miguel T. Tamondong)

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Samuel Chipman, the 355th Fighter Squadron (FS) commander, renders the squadron salute prior to takeoff on Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021.

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Samuel Chipman, the 355th Fighter Squadron (FS) commander, renders the squadron salute prior to takeoff on Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021. The squadron salute resembling a falcon’s talons is inspired by the 355th FS’s identity as the ‘Fighting Falcons’. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jose Miguel T. Tamondong)

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Samuel Chipman, left, the 355th Fighter Squadron (FS) commander, and a crew chief assigned to the 355th Aircraft Maintenance Unit render the squadron’s salute to each other prior to takeoff on Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021.

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Samuel Chipman, left, the 355th Fighter Squadron (FS) commander, and a crew chief assigned to the 355th Aircraft Maintenance Unit render the squadron’s salute to each other prior to takeoff on Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021. The squadron salute resembling a falcon’s talons is inspired by the 355th FS’s identity as the ‘Fighting Falcons’. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jose Miguel T. Tamondong)

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Samuel Chipman, left, the 355th Fighter Squadron (FS) commander, conducts preflight inspections as an Airman assigned to the 355th Aircraft Maintenance Unit secures a panel on an F-35A Lightning II on Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021.

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Samuel Chipman, left, the 355th Fighter Squadron (FS) commander, conducts preflight inspections as an Airman assigned to the 355th Aircraft Maintenance Unit secures a panel on an F-35A Lightning II on Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021. The 355th FS’s primary mission is the suppression of enemy air defenses and offensive counter-air missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jose Miguel T. Tamondong)

U.S. Air Force pilots assigned to the 355th Fighter Squadron (FS) attend a preflight briefing on Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021.

U.S. Air Force pilots assigned to the 355th Fighter Squadron (FS) attend a preflight briefing on Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021. The 355th FS hit a historical milestone by flying their first official Flying Hour Program sorties as a combat-coded F-35 unit. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jose Miguel T. Tamondong)

EIELSON AIR FORCE BASE, Alaska -- An F-35A Lightning II assigned to the 355th Fighter Squadron flies over Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 1, 2021. As one of the 354th Fighter Wing’s F-35A units, the 355th FS bolsters the 354th wing’s transition to a combat-coded mission, doubling U.S. Pacific Air Forces’ F-35A combat capability. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jose Miguel T. Tamondong)