An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

The legacy continues

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Lauren M. Snyder
  • 332d Air Expeditionary Wing

The 332d Air Expeditionary Wing's Warrior of the Week for the week of March 1, 2022, is Staff Sgt. Nicholas Owens, 55th Expeditionary Fighter Generation Squadron Phase Inspection Section shift lead.

“I'm responsible for taking this aircraft apart and putting it back together; my eyes are on everything inside. We identify critical component failures and fix them at a rapid pace with tactical aircraft maintenance,” said Owens. “We had an increased workload and I was able to prioritize, divvy up and set flow to give those jets back early and roll into the next phase so they weren't falling behind in scheduled maintenance.”

The seven-man phase inspection team here is responsible for conducting in-depth inspections of F-16 Fighting Falcons after they reach 400 flying hours. The inspection takes approximately five days and requires taking all panels off the aircraft from nose to tail, looking for things that may not be found when the jet is on the flight line, performing heavy maintenance, reassembling, and then tracking its performance to ensure success.

“When you have a team lead who really understands there’s not one hour of flight that doesn’t have hours on the ground of maintenance, knows his role in a critical mission, and rallies his team around to get it done: that is what we need in our Air Force and makes us number one in the world,” said Chief Master Sgt. Sean M. Milligan, 332d Air Expeditionary Wing command chief.

Owens’ team was responsible for removing and reinstalling 20 parts from an F-16 in three days without any quality assurance discrepancies, ultimately completing the aircraft phase inspection two days ahead of schedule, which returned the aircraft back to its mission of ensuring regional stability faster than anticipated.

Warrior of the Week is a competitive recognition program that highlights significant contributions made by individual Airmen who raise the Red Tail standard and enhance the mission and capabilities of the 332d Air Expeditionary Wing.