FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE) — The City of Fresno has been honored with the dedication of an F-15 fighter jet. The California Air National Guard’s 144th Fighter Wing brought back its Cities of Honor Program Friday.
“Many characteristics of the mighty F-15 C represent some of the characteristics of the partnership that I believe we have and continue to build with the City of Fresno,” Col. Troy Havener the 144th fighter wing commander said.
Col. Havener compared the two by calling the jet which has been flying for nearly 50 years, long-lasting.
“And our partnership has been lasting since the 1940s. As Fresno International Guard base has been resident at the air terminal and now the Fresno Yosemite International Airport,” he said.
The Cities of Honor program was first initiated in 2014. Each dedication means an F-15 Eagle dons nose art with the city’s crest.
Mayor Jerry Dyer took a moment to show mutual recognition to the men and women who serve.
“Thank you from the depth of my heart as the mayor of the City of Fresno and as a United States citizen. Thank you for what you do for our country,” he said.
Col. Havener said many of the 1,100 airmen on base are community members and over the next few years the wing plans to continue dedicating jets to other cities throughout the Valley.
Dyer also said Col. Havener reached out to him to ask how they could help the city, so they’ll be working with both Beautify Fresno as well as doing youth mentoring.