Marine Corps Capt. Carlos Aguirre fires an M4 carbine during training at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, Oct. 17, 2020.

Eielson Air Force Base hosts the 354th Fighter Wing a crucial element of the Eleventh Air Force (11 AF), Pacific Air Forces. The mission of the 354th Fighter Wing is to “Prepare U.S. and partner forces for 21st century combat and to project and integrate Airpower in support of worldwide operations.”

The wing has six priorities, which are: “Strong Airmen and Families, Resilient Airfield and Infrastrucutre, Preparation for 2 x F-35 Combat Squadrons, Premier Joint/Air Exercises and Adversary Support, Synchronized Airpower into Army I Corps Ops, and OPLAN-Focused Readiness.”

Airmen stationed on Eielson commonly refer to themselves as “Icemen” owing to the Alaskan weather. Their wing motto is: “Ready to go at fifty below!”