Tuesday night’s meeting in El Mirage and last night’s meeting in Surprise each attracted big crowds of approximately 300 people. Luke supporters donning military hats, t-shirts, pins and stickers could be found everywhere at the meetings, which are being conducted by the Air Force to solicit input from citizens in preparation of the F-35 environmental study at the Glendale base.
Based on reports from other communities, such as New Mexico, Utah and Idaho, which are also under consideration to receive the Air Force’s joint strike fighter program, the Luke meetings are drawing record crowds.
“At last night’s meeting in Surprise, there was a line of people waiting to get inside the meeting room,” said Fighter Country Partnership’s Steve Yamamori, whose organization is working with 12 West Valley cities and Maricopa County to bring the F-35 to Luke. West Valley residents and others are showing up in force at these meetings to express their support for the Air Force to bring the F-35 to Luke. This strong support by local citizens is definitely going to send a clear message to decisions makers back in Washington, D.C. that Arizona strongly supports the F-35.”
Based on the criteria the Air Force will use to evaluate sites for the F-35 mission, Luke is well positioned to receive the F-35 and continue to serve as the Air Force’s “school house” for America’s fighter pilots and maintainers.
Local leaders know, however, that until a decision is made, nothing can be taken for granted, and they urge continued strong support from Arizonans statewide.
Luke has been training fighter pilots since 1941, and Arizona features the ideal climate, land, airspace and training rangers – including the Barry M. Goldwater Range in southern Arizona – that cannot be replicated anywhere in the country.
For more information on the public-scoping meetings, which run through Friday, or to register your support for the F-35 at Luke, visit www.LukeForward.com.
CONTACT: Steve Yamamori, Fighter Country Partnership, 623-882-2191