HomeNewsArticle View

Spouses get first-hand look at refueling

A group of 940th Air Refueling Wing spouses board a KC-135 Stratotanker Feb. 10 at Beale Air Force Base, California.

A group of 940th Air Refueling Wing spouses board a KC-135 Stratotanker Feb. 10 at Beale Air Force Base, California. Two small groups were brought on a tanker sortie to connect with their military spouses and to get a closer look into their jobs. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Tara R. Abrahams)

Spouses of 940th Air Refueling Wing members take a selfie on a KC-135 Stratotanker Feb. 10 at Beale Air Force Base, California.

Spouses of 940th Air Refueling Wing members take a selfie on a KC-135 Stratotanker Feb. 10 at Beale Air Force Base, California. Thirteen husbands and wives were invited to watch air-to-air refueling as part of the spouse flight tour. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Tara R. Abrahams)

Lt. Col. Scott Meyer, 314 Air Refueling Squadron director of operations, shows a group of military spouses around a KC-135 Stratotanker Feb. 10 at Beale Air Force Base, California.

Lt. Col. Scott Meyer, 314 Air Refueling Squadron director of operations, shows a group of military spouses around a KC-135 Stratotanker Feb. 10 at Beale Air Force Base, California. Meyer and twelve other 940th Air Refueling Wing members brought their spouses to get a first-hand look at the refueling mission. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Tara R. Abrahams)

Staff Sgt. Amy Zemaitis, 314th Air Refueling Squadron boom operator, gives a safety briefing to wing spouses Feb. 10 at Beale Air Force Base, California.

Staff Sgt. Amy Zemaitis, 314th Air Refueling Squadron boom operator, gives a safety briefing to wing spouses Feb. 10 at Beale Air Force Base, California. Thirteen spouses were brought on KC-135 Stratotankers to watch a C-17 Globemaster III from Travis AFB, California, get refueled in the air. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Tara R. Abrahams)

BEALE AIR FORCE BASE, California --

Thirteen husbands and wives of 940th Air Refueling Wing Reserve Citizen Airmen flew on KC-135 Stratotankers to watch air-to-air refueling Feb. 10. 

 

It was the first spouse flight for the 314th Air Refueling Squadron since the wing’s re-designation to the tanker mission in 2016. The tankers, belonging to the 314 ARS at Beale Air Force Base, California, refueled a C-17 Globemaster III from Travis AFB, California. 

 

The experience gave the group a chance to see exactly what their loved ones do to keep the crews and jets mission ready. Col. Miles Heaslip, 940th Operations Group commander, encouraged the guests to connect with their military spouses to get a deeper look into their jobs.  

 

Senior Master Sgt. Charles Mackay, 940th Maintenance Squadron maintenance flight chief, brought his wife, Desiree, to get a first-hand look at the mission. 

 

“I’m excited,” Desiree said. “I love flying, but have never been on this plane. I’m looking forward to the refueling. 

 

It was also Tim Pfafman’s first time on a refueling mission. Tim’s wife, Lt. Col. Jenni Pfafman, a 314th ARS pilot, led the three ship, while Tim followed in the second plane. He said he was excited to see the refueling, as well as seeing his wife fly the plane in front of him. 

 

The crews and leadership were just as eager about the opportunity as the families. 

 

“This is something we’ve been looking forward to for a very long time,” Heaslip said. “It takes a lot of work and a lot of people to get these jets in the air.” 

 

He also expressed his gratitude for their role in the military. 

 

“I understand the sacrifices you make for your spouses,” he said. “I can’t stress to you enough how important it is and how appreciative we are of that.