Saturday, February 25, 2012

F-35B rollout marked

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- The Marine Corps on Friday hosted a rollout ceremony to celebrate the arrival of the F-35B, the short takeoff-vertical landing variant of the Joint Strike Fighter. Hundreds attended the event at Eglin Air Force Base in northwest Florida. Officials said military training flights could be approved by late March or early April. There are three F-35Bs at Eglin, along with six Air Force F-35A versions. The first Marine Corps versions arrived in early January. The F-35B is slated to replace the Marine Corps' F/A-18 Hornet, AV-8B Harrier and EA-6B Prowler. Eglin is home of the JSF training center, which will train pilots and maintainers for all branches of the military and foreign allies. (Sources: Reuters, Northwest Florida Daily News, 02/24/12)