Portland fighter pilot reaches 3,000 flying hours in F-15

by Capt. Angela Walz
142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs

2/19/2016 – PORTLAND AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Ore. — Colonel Adam “Khan” Sitler joined an elite group of fighter pilots to reach 3,000 flight hours in an F-15 Eagle, Feb. 18 at Portland Air National Guard Base, Oregon. Sitler, an F-15 instructor pilot and the 142nd Operations Group Commander, crossed that threshold during a routine training mission here. He is the 99th pilot on record with Boeing as having achieved 3,000 flying hours in an F-15.

Col. Adam Sitler, 142nd Operations Group Commander, poses for a photo with the pilots of the 123rd Fighter Squadron upon returning from his flight marking 3,000 hours in the F-15 Eagle. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Shelly Davison, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

“Each and every sortie takes a team effort. No one reaches an aviation milestone on their own,” Sitler said. “I’m the beneficiary of countless hours of toil on the part of the most professional aircraft maintainers in the world. They deliver not just safe, but fully mission capable aircraft that I’m privileged to fly,” he said.

As the 142 OG Commander, Col. Sitler leads more than 375 personnel in the execution of the F-15 mission defending the Pacific Northwest, worldwide deployments supporting national objectives, and domestic operations activities as directed by the Governor. He has flown more than 50 combat missions and 250 combat hours in Operation Allied Force and Operation Southern Watch.

“He’s a great fighter pilot, an extraordinary leader and mentor to our junior pilots, and an overall asset to the Air Force and the Oregon Air National Guard,” said Col. Donna Prigmore, 142nd Fighter Wing Vice Commander. “Khan epitomizes the National Guard motto of ‘always on mission.’ It’s because of people like him that the Air National Guard is always ready, always there,” Col. Prigmore said.

Sitler speaks passionately about his Air Force job and the Air National Guard mission. “It takes continual practice to be ready to provide air superiority at any time, at any place.  It’s not an exaggeration to say that for every hour spent in the air, at least five or more hours are spent on the ground planning, preparing, briefing, and debriefing each and every sortie.  The American people expect us to be ready, and we’re ready to live up to that demand,” he said.

Colonel Sitler was commissioned in May 1996 after graduating from the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Upon completion of Undergraduate Pilot Training and F-15 Training, he was assigned to the 493rd Fighter Squadron at Royal Air Force Lakenheath, United Kingdom. He served as a Combat Mission Ready Wingman, Flight-Lead, Mission Commander and Instructor Pilot.

In 2001, Col. Sitler was assigned to the 71st Fighter Squadron at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. He served as a Combat Mission Ready Instructor Pilot and Weapons Officer after completing the United States Air Force Weapons School in 2003. In 2004 he was assigned to the 85th Test and Evaluation Squadron, Eglin Air Force Base, Florida, where he served as the Chief of F-15 Projects.

Sitler separated from active-duty Air Force in January of 2007 and joined the 142nd Fighter Wing, Oregon Air National Guard. He has served as Squadron and Wing Weapons Officer, Flight Commander, Squadron Operations Officer, Wing Consolidated Unit Inspection Project Officer, and Fighter Squadron Commander.

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