Friday, September 30, 2016

Air Force Couple Flying High

Face of Defense: Married Air Force Pilots Serve, Fly Together
Department of Defense
By Air Force Senior Airman Christopher Thornbury
22nd Air Refueling Wing
September 29, 2016
“It makes it easier to talk about what’s going on at work, because we understand very intimately what’s going on in terms of the struggles to make the mission happen,” Chrystina said. “We understand each other’s challenges better than most.”
The couple that flies together
Capt. Chrystina Jones, left, 350th Air Refueling Squadron pilot, and Maj. Matt Jones, 349th ARS pilot, pose with their son, Dec. 2015, at McConnell Air Force Base, Kan. They both “refuel the fight” as KC-135 Stratotanker pilots, an aircraft that first took flight for the first time 60 years ago. (Courtesy photo)
MCCONNELL AIR FORCE BASE, Kan.
For Air Force Maj. Matthew Jones and Air Force Capt. Chrystina Jones, love found them as C-130 Hercules pilots, and, over the years, gave them a different set of wings as KC-135 Stratotanker pilots and even added two more to their aircrew: their son and daughter.

The couple is relatively new to the KC-135, qualifying 14 months ago. Although a different mission brought them together, Matt relates his past and present with his wife with the tanker as it approaches its 60-year anniversary of its first flight.

“Chrystina and I share history together,” Matthew said. “The KC-135 has its own great history; it is just incredible for us to be a part of it.”

Before marriage, the couple served in the same squadron as C-130 pilots where they trained together. While they never operated a mission together, they did deploy with each other for five months to Iraq. As tanker pilots, they are assigned to different squadrons: Matt is a “Bandit” of the 349th Air Refueling Squadron; and Chrystina is a “Raven” of the 350th ARS.
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