Bellows Air Force Station (Bellows Field) is a United States military reservation located in Waimanalo, Hawaii. Once an important air field during World War II, the reservation now serves as a military training area and recreation area for active and retired military and civilian employees of the Department of Defense. Bellows AFS is operated by Detachment 2, 18th Force Support Squadron of the 18th Mission Support Group based at Kadena Air Base, Okinawa, Japan. Located on the opposite side of Oahu is the similar Pililaau Army Recreation Center, part of the Armed Forces Recreation Centers system.
Created in 1917 as the Waimanalo Military Reservation, the base was renamed Bellows Field in 1933 after Lt. Franklin Barney Bellows, a World War I war hero. Bellows Field was made a permanent military post in July 1941, and it was one of the airfields targeted during the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. The attack at Bellows Field killed two United States Army Air Forces airmen—George Allison Whiteman and Hans C. Christiansen—and injured six others. One B-17 bomber was forced to land at Bellows during the attack when Japanese aircraft activity made landing at Hickam Field impossible.
Bellows Field was used for recreational gliders in the late 1950s and early 1960s. A truck would tow a glider into the air, then the glider pilot would release the tow cable and then catch updrafts from the prevailing wind blowing inshore and deflecting upwards from the very nearby mountains. In this way the pilot could keep the glider in the air as long as desired.
Bellows AFS was also the Air Force transmitter facility site for long haul HF (High Frequency) radio communications from the late 1950s until HF radio was largely replaced by the military satellite program. HF radio links were established using highly directional Sloping "V" antennas to Clark Air Base, Philippines, and McClellan AFB, California. Message circuits were originated or relayed at Hickam AFB, near Pearl Harbor, and sent to Bellows for re-transmission over the HF systems. The receiver site was geographically separated from the transmitter site to prevent RF interference from the high power transmitters.
In 1958, when the last runways were closed and the flying field status terminated, Bellows was renamed Bellows Air Force Station with a primary mission as an Armed Forces Recreation Center. As a Recreation Center, Bellows AFS provides beachfront cabins, camping, and limited condominium style apartments for active duty, reserve, and retired military personnel to stay in. Additionally, there is a small AAFES Express shopette, a paintball course, and Turtle Cove outdoor adventure program office.
The Marine Corps acquired approximately 1,049 acres of Bellows from the Air Force in 1999. The Marine Corps Training Area Bellows is now part of Marine Corps Base Hawaii, headquartered in Kaneohe Bay. MCTAB adds significant training capabilities and maneuver space for non-live fire military training activities. The Marines and other services use the training areas to conduct amphibious, helicopter, and motorized exercises in conjunction with troop land maneuver training. It is currently the only place in Hawaii where amphibious landings can transition directly into maneuver training areas for extremely realistic military training.
Recent improvements to the training area over the old runway include construction of a forward operating base (FOB) mock-up around the old Bldg. 700, Bldg. 700 renovations, and a modular military operations in urban terrain (MOUT) training system that consists of 74 buildings (made from shipping containers) on four separate sites. Additional containers have been moved into the main training area to be used as part of a combat vehicle operators' course for Marines to simulate driving in real-world conditions.
The 298th Regiment, Multi-Functional Training Unit (MFTU), Regional Training Institute (RTI) is part of the Army's Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) Army School System. The headquarters and 1st and 2nd Battalions are located at Bellows Air Force Station in Waimanalo, Hawaii. The Ordnance Training Company is located at the Regional Training Site Maintenance (RTSM) facilities in Pearl City, Hawaii.
The RTI is accredited by various agencies, including TRADOC, the U.S. Army Sergeants Major Academy, active duty proponent schools for the various military occupational specialties, and the U.S. Army Ordnance Center.
The 15th Operations Group (15 OG) is the flying component of the 15th Wing, assigned to the United States Air Force Thirteenth Air Force. The group is stationed at Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii. It is also responsible for managing operational matters at Bellows Air Force Station, Hawaii and Wake Island Airfield.
The 15th Operations Group has three operational squadrons assigned flying C-17, KC-135, F-22, C-40B, and C-37A aircraft along with an operational support squadron supporting the Commander, U.S. Pacific Command and the Commander, Pacific Air Forces.15th Wing
The 15th Wing is a wing of the United States Air Force at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii. The wing reports to 11th Air Force, Headquartered at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska.
Its history goes back to just before World War II, when the 15th Pursuit Group was organized at Wheeler Field, Hawaii from elements of the 18th Pursuit Group. The group's combat effectiveness was largely destroyed during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941. Remanned and re-equipped as the 15th Fighter Group, it remained in the Hawaiian islands to provide for the air defense of the islands, although it deployed squadrons and detachments to the Central and Western Pacific areas. It later became a Twentieth Air Force very long range fighter group on Iwo Jima, escorting Boeing B-29 Superfortress bombers that attacked the Japanese home Islands. In April 1945 the group earned a Distinguished Unit Citation for combat action over Japan. Following the end of the war, the group returned to Hawaii, where it was inactivated in 1946.
The group was again activated in 1955 to replace the 518th Air Defense Group as part of Air Defense Command's Project Arrow, which replaced units formed during the Cold War with those that had a distinguished history in the two world wars. It performed the air defense mission at Niagara Falls Municipal Airport, New York until it was discontinued in 1960 and its mission assumed by the New York Air National Guard.
In July 1962, Tactical Air Command organized the 15th Tactical Fighter Wing as the second McDonnell F-4 Phantom II wing at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida. Although its companion 12th Tactical Fighter Wing was one of the first wings deployed during the Vietnam War, the 15th acted as an F-4 combat crew training unit during this era, although it assumed a tactical role during the Cuban Missile Crisis and the Pueblo crisis. In 1970 the wing was inactivated and its mission, personnel and equipment were transferred to the 1st Tactical Fighter Wing, which moved on paper to MacDill from Hamilton Air Force Base, California.
Little more than a year later, the wing returned to Hawaii as the 15th Air Base Wing, when it replaced the 6486th Air Base Wing as the host organization at Hickam Air Force Base. The wing has been stationed at Hickam (now Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam) since then. In 1984, the 15th group and 15th wing were consolidated into a single unit.Accidents and incidents involving the V-22 Osprey
The Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey is an American military tiltrotor aircraft with an accident history that has generated some controversy over its perceived safety. The aircraft was developed by Bell Helicopter and Boeing Helicopters; the companies partner in its manufacture and support.
The V-22 Osprey had 12 hull loss accidents that resulted in a total of 42 fatalities. During testing from 1991 to 2006 there were four crashes resulting in 30 fatalities. Since becoming operational in 2007, the V-22 has had seven crashes including two combat-zone crashes, and several other accidents and incidents that resulted in a total of 12 fatalities.Arts in the Armed Forces
Arts in the Armed Forces, Inc. (AITAF) is a non-profit based in Brooklyn, New York that brings high-quality arts programming to active-duty service members, veterans, military support staff and their families around the world free of charge.The organization was founded by actors Adam Driver and Joanne Tucker in 2006. The non-profit became an official incorporation in 2008.
AITAF serves all branches of the military at US installations domestically and abroad. They choose content that features diverse themes, ages, ethnicities and experiences to create a complex and unique experience for our audiences.Importantly, after each of AITAF’s events, the artists interact with the audience through a question and answer session.AITAF’s goal is not simply to provide an enjoyable evening, but to use the powerfully emotional shared experience of the arts to start conversations capable of bridging the divides between military and civilian, service member and family member, the world of the arts and the world of practical action.Exercise RIMPAC
RIMPAC, the Rim of the Pacific Exercise, is the world's largest international maritime warfare exercise. RIMPAC is held biennially during June and July of even-numbered years from Honolulu, Hawaii. It is hosted and administered by the United States Navy's Indo-Pacific Command, headquartered at Pearl Harbor, in conjunction with the Marine Corps, the Coast Guard, and Hawaii National Guard forces under the control of the Governor of Hawaii. The US invites military forces from the Pacific Rim and beyond to participate. With RIMPAC the United States Indo-Pacific Command seeks to enhance interoperability among Pacific Rim armed forces, as a means of promoting stability in the region to the benefit of all participating nations. It is described by the US Navy as a unique training opportunity that helps participants foster and sustain the cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and security on the world's oceans.Hickam Air Force Base
Hickam Air Force Base is a United States Air Force installation, named in honor of aviation pioneer Lieutenant Colonel Horace Meek Hickam. The base merged with the Naval Station Pearl Harbor to become part of the Joint Base Pearl Harbor–Hickam. The base neighbors Honolulu International Airport and currently shares runways with the airport for its activities and purposes.Hoʻokupu
Hoʻokupu is a Hawaiian language term for gifts and offerings. The ceremony dates back hundreds of years, to a time when the average Hawaiian subsisted on manual labor, with little-to-no financial assets. Their gifts were literally the fruits of their personal labors to the Hawaiian aliʻi (rulers), or to visiting royalty. Through time, the gifts became more monetary based and a part of the monarch's wealth. Although they were allowed to approach the monarch with the gifts, they were handed to a royal attendant so as not to touch the aliʻi. In 1869, the visiting Duke of Edinburgh Prince Alfred was accorded a hoʻokupu by Kamehameha V, and broke with protocol by reaching out to touch any gift-giver who wished to shake his hand.The gift protocol is still done for Lono during the Makahiki festival and for celebrations related to Hawaiian kings.List of United States Air Force installations
This is a list of United States Air Force installations.List of presidential trips made by Barack Obama (2016)
This is a list of presidential trips made by Barack Obama during 2016, the eighth year of his presidency as the 44th President of the United States.
This list excludes trips made within Washington, D.C., the U.S. federal capital in which the White House, the official residence and principal workplace of the President, is located. Also excluded are trips to Camp David, the country residence of the President, and to the private home of the Obama family in Kenwood, Chicago.Makahiki
The Makahiki season is the ancient Hawaiian New Year festival, in honor of the god Lono of the Hawaiian religion.
It is a holiday covering four consecutive lunar months, approximately from October or November through February or March. The focus of this season was a time for men, women and chiefs to rest, strengthen the body, and have great feasts of commemoration (ʻahaʻaina hoʻomanaʻo). During Makahiki season labor was prohibited and there were days for resting and feasting. The Hawaiians gave thanks to the god Lonoikamakahiki for his care. He brought life, blessings, peace and victory to the land. They also prayed to the gods for the death of their enemies. Makaʻainana (commoners) prayed that lands of their aliʻi (chief) may be increased, and that their own physical health along with the health of their chiefs be at the fullest.In antiquity, many religious ceremonies occurred during this period. Commoners stopped work, made offerings to the chief or aliʻi, and then spent their time practicing sports, feasting, dancing and renewing communal bonds. During the four lunar months of the Makahiki season warfare was forbidden which was used as "a ritually inscribed means to assure that nothing would adversely affect the new crops."Today, the Aloha Festivals (originally Aloha Week) celebrate the Makahiki tradition.Underwater Demolition Team
The Underwater Demolition Teams (UDT) were a special-purpose force established by the United States Navy during World War II. They came to be considered more elite and tactical during the Korean and Vietnam Wars. Their primary WWII function began with the reconnaissance and removal of natural or man-made obstacles on beaches prior to amphibious landings. They later were assigned to assist in the recovery of Space capsules/astronauts after splash down in the Mercury and Apollo space flight programs. The United States Navy's Underwater Demolition Teams were pioneers in underwater demolition, closed-circuit diving, combat swimming, and midget submarine (dry and wet submersible) operations. Commando training was added making them the forerunner to the United States Navy SEAL program that exists today.In 1983, after additional SEAL training, the UDTs were re-designated as SEAL Teams or Swimmer Delivery Vehicle Teams (SDVTs). SDVTs have since been re-designated SEAL Delivery Vehicle Teams.Waimānalo, Hawaii
Waimānalo is a census-designated place (CDP) in the City & County of Honolulu, in the District of Koʻolaupoko on the island of Oʻahu, Hawaii, United States. This small windward community is located near the eastern end of the island. In the Hawaiian language Waimānalo means "potable water"; it is so named for the many brackish ponds in the area that were used for irrigation. As of the 2010 Census, the CDP had a population of 5,451.About 1000 meters east of Waimānalo is the neighborhood of Waimānalo Beach. Waimānalo has a small commercial center along Kalanianaʻole Highway, but is separated from the shoreline and Waimānalo Beach (the longest stretch of sandy shoreline on Oʻahu) by Bellows Air Force Station. Waimānalo is noteworthy for its local flavor and large agricultural lots in the valley that extend back towards the Koʻolau from the center of town. Numerous plant nurseries are found in this area. There are no hotels in Waimānalo.
Waimānalo is the site of Sea Life Park, located near Hawaiʻi Kai on Kalanianaole Highway. The U.S. postal code for Waimānalo is 96795.