JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas –
Maj. Gen. Michael Keltz assumed command of 19th Air Force in a ceremony Friday at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph.
Air Education and Training Command officially activated the numbered Air Force Oct. 1, marking another milestone in its flying education and training program for the Air Force, other services and the nation's allies.
Nineteenth Air Force is responsible for the training of world-class aircrews, air battle managers, weapons directors, Air Force Academy Airmanship programs and survival, escape, resistance and evasion Airmen to sustain the combat capability of the United States Air Force.
Gen. Robin Rand, AETC commander, spoke to the reputation of the 19th Air Force mission.
"Nineteenth Air Force will continue to build upon a legacy," Rand said. "This mission is of the utmost importance and failure is not an option."
Keltz said 19th Air Force's legacy is one of an agile and leading-edge force, and today's Airmen are no different.
"The Airmen of today's 19th Air Force walk in the footsteps of giants," Keltz said. "We're looking to the future, while maintaining the basics of a noble past. We can't forget where we came from."
The numbered Air Force is responsible for flying more than 490,000 hours annually, which is 44 percent of the Air Force total flying hours. Nineteenth Air Force is comprised of 19 training locations, with 16 Total Force wings: 10 active duty, one Air Force Reserve, and five Air National Guard units. More than 32,000 personnel and 1,350 aircraft of 29 different models make up the force.
Keltz said the entire team is responsible for 19th Air Force's future success.
"Nineteenth Air Force is not just about training people; it's a mindset," Keltz said. "We're responsible for building fifth generation Airmen, capable of operating in all dimensions of warfare."
The ceremony ushered in another chapter in 19th Air Force's tradition of excellence and vital role in the Air Force's First Command.