Moody Expansion, Part 1

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August 22, 2006

A major cutback at Pope Air Force Base in North Carolina means Moody will welcome the 23rd Fighting Group and its distinctive A-10 fighter planes.

This official realignment ceremony symbolized by the exchange of flags represents a change in operational control. The end result is another expansion of Moody Air Force Base.

LT General Gary North said, "It's all part of the shuffle, if you will, to make sure we are aligned properly and we can enhance our mission to the effectiveness to what we need to fight the global War on Terror."

To maximize Moody's potential, the base will welcome the 23rd Fighter Group along with its A-10 fighter planes. This event is one of the first official changes resulting from the 2005 Department of Defense Base Realignment And Closure.

"The downsizing effects of BRAC are not only being felt here at Pope Air Force Base, but military bases across the country are downsizing and a few are even shutting down,"
North said.

"It saves cost. It's great for the taxpayers. It allows us in the military to be more efficient."

Moody officials say the expansion will be challenging, but they are prepared.

COL Joeseph Callahan said, "It's the largest I've ever been associated with as a colonel."

SSGT Shawn Seredni added, "We look forward to working with the fighters again back at Moody, should be a great experience for all of us.

The unit will come in as Moody's 479th Flying Training Group is relocated to bases in Texas and the A-10's will begin arriving at moody early next year. Wednesday we'll see how those planes are being used in the heat of battle overseas.