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Students receive their Air Force wings during graduation ceremony at Vance

  • Published
  • 71st Flying Training Wing Public Affairs

VANCE AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – Twenty-two students in Undergraduate Pilot Training Class 23-15 received their wings during a ceremony held Oct. 6 at Vance Air Force Base.

Having completed their initial aviation training in the T-6A Texan II, the newly pinned pilots will continue in either the T-1A Jayhawk or the T-38C Talon training aircraft at Vance.

The guest speaker at the Class 23-15 graduation ceremony was Brig. Gen. David Unruh, the Assistant Adjutant General for Air in the Oregon Air National Guard. He received his Air Force pilot wings following Undergraduate Pilot Training in April 2002, here at Vance. Unruh is a command pilot with 3,400 flying hours in the F-15 Eagle and the T-38.

Class 23-15 award winners were:
Capt. Zheng Qi Ong received the Academic Award, the Flying Training Award, the Air Education & Training Command Commander’s Trophy and was named a Distinguished Graduate;
2nd Lt. Jarod Fisher received the Leadership Award;            
2nd Lt. Dane Winding received the Wingman Award;
2nd Lt. Calen Kollars was named a Distinguished Graduate.

Also receiving their pilot wings during the ceremony were:
2nd Lts. Logan Beck, Natalie Fontenot, Andreas Garcia, Ryan Gentry, Daniel Gidaro, Blake Hitchcock, Jonathon Hughes, John Kropp, Jack Lewis, Cody Martin, Kyler Martin, Maxwell McKinnon, Kayla Mills, William Phillis, Marshall Shults, Nathaniel Torres, Brandon Van Norman and Austin White.

Vance has graduated 35,803 pilots since training began in 1941.