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Aviation enthusiasts hear from 419 FW vice

Col. Dan “B.B.” Gable shakes hands with Army Air Corps retiree Tom Fitzgerald after presenting at the Hill Aerospace Museum’s “Plane Talk” series Saturday

Col. Dan “B.B.” Gable, 419th Fighter Wing vice commander, shakes hands with Army Air Corps retiree Tom Fitzgerald after presenting at the Hill Aerospace Museum’s “Plane Talk” series Saturday. (U.S. Air Force photo/2nd Lt. Christina Judd)

Col. Dan “B.B.” Gable presents to a full room at the Hill Aerospace Museum’s “Plane Talk” series Saturday

Col. Dan “B.B.” Gable presents to a full room at the Hill Aerospace Museum’s “Plane Talk” series Saturday. Gable shared his experience from a quarter century of flying, which led him to be the vice commander of the 419th Fighter Wing. (U.S. Air Force photo/2nd Lt. Christina Judd)

ROY, Utah – More than 50 local aviation enthusiasts and veterans heard from Col. Daniel “B.B.” Gable, 419th Fighter Wing vice commander, during a “Plane Talk” series event on Saturday at the Hill Aerospace Museum.

Gable talked about the various aircraft he has flown throughout his 25-year-flying career, including the F-35 Lightning II.

“I’m telling you, there is nothing comparable,” Gable said of the F-35, the Air Force’s newest and most advanced fighter jet.

The F-35 is a tremendous leap in aerospace engineering. Its low observable stealth allows pilots to safely enter enemy airspace that legacy fighters, such as the F-16, cannot.

Attendee Tom Fitzgerald, an Army Air Corps retiree, said he goes to as many museum events as possible, and said he loves what the Air Force is doing now.

“We didn’t have anything like these jets back then, but I could fix anything,” he said.

Gable is a command pilot with more than 2,500 flying hours in the T-37, T-38, AT-38C, F-16C/D, and F-35A. He has deployed in support of a Pacific Air Forces Theater Security Package and has flown in Operations Southern Watch, Northern Watch, Noble Eagle, and Enduring Freedom, logging more than 330 combat hours.

Hill AFB was the first in the Air Force to receive operation F-35s in 2015. By the end of this year, the base will be home to a total of 78 F-35s. The 419th FW flies and maintains a fleet of F-35s alongside its active duty counterparts in the 388th FW as part of a Total Force Integration initiative aimed at capitalizing on the strengths of each component.