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USFJ, 5th Air Force Leadership Visits Misawa

Two military members in uniform stand outside a school and talk to students in JROTC uniforms.

U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Ricky Rupp, U.S. Forces Japan (USFJ) and 5th Air Force commander, and Command Chief Master Sgt. Wendell Snider, USFJ senior enlisted leader, speaks with Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps members during a visit at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Oct. 7, 2021. Rupp’s visit included the opportunity to visit the base’s school where he was greeted by the students. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Joao Marcus Costa)

A man in uniform speaks in front a group.

U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Ricky Rupp, U.S. Forces Japan and 5th Air Force commander, address Professional Development Center class attendees during a visit at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Oct. 8, 2021. During the visit, Rupp met with service members in multiple facilities to learn about how each unit’s mission tied into USFJ and 5th Air Force’s mission to support the U.S.-Japan alliance, and defend Japan. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Grace Nichols)

Group of military members in uniform stand in front of hanger talking.

U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Ricky Rupp, U.S. Forces Japan (USFJ) and 5th Air Force commander, and Command Chief Master Sgt. Wendell Snider, USFJ senior enlisted leader, answered questions from Airmen with the 35th Civil Engineer Squadron during a visit at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Oct. 8, 2021. Rupp and Snider got spoke with the Airmen after coining a master sergeant for his work during a Prime Base Engineer Emergency Forces exercise. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Joao Marcus Costa)

people sit around a conference table

Charlotte Rupp, spouse of U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Ricky Rupp, U.S. Forces Japan and 5th Air Force commander, speaks with the Community Action Team to learn about the challenges and accomplishments faced in the last year during a visit at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Oct. 7, 2021. The Rupps have visited many bases in the Indo-Pacific region to hear directly from service members and their families. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Grace Nichols)

Group of military members in uniform stand in a school and talk to staff members

U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Ricky Rupp, U.S. Forces Japan and 5th Air Force commander, talks to Jason Sheedy, Edgren Middle/High School principal, during a visit at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Oct. 7, 2021. New renovations creating open concept class spaces were highlighted during the tour of the school. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Joao Marcus Costa)

people pose for a photo

Charlotte Rupp, spouse of U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Ricky Rupp, U.S. Forces Japan and 5th Air Force commander, meets with members of the Professional Development Center (PDC) during a tour at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Oct. 8, 2021. Rupp learned about how the PDC not only supports service members during their careers, but also how it helps spouses in their endeavors as well. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Grace Nichols)

People pose for a photo

Charlotte Rupp, spouse of U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Ricky Rupp, U.S. Forces Japan and 5th Air Force commander, poses for a photo with Misawa Air Base Key Spouses, and community members actively running Home Based Businesses (HBB), during a tour at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Oct. 8, 2021. Rupp learned about how each HBB supports the base population, from birth doulas to seamstresses. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Grace Nichols)

Military members in uniform sit in a snow removal vehicle.

U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Ricky Rupp, U.S. Forces Japan and 5th Air Force commander, participates in a snow removal vehicle test drive during a visit at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Oct. 8, 2021. Misawa AB civil engineers, operate 24-hours during the snow season, ensuring the airfield is open regardless of weather conditions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Joao Marcus Costa)

Group of military members in uniform stand in front of hanger talking.

U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Ricky Rupp, U.S. Forces Japan (USFJ) and 5th Air Force commander, and Command Chief Master Sgt. Wendell Snider, USFJ senior enlisted leader, talk with Airmen from the 35th Maintenance Squadron about the importance of their mission during a visit at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Oct. 8, 2021. Rupp and Snider were shown the Hush House where Misawa tests their jet engines prior to being installed in operational aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Joao Marcus Costa)

Group of military members in uniform sit in a conference room during a brief.
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U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Ricky Rupp, U.S. Forces Japan (USFJ) and 5th Air Force commander, and Command Chief Master Sgt. Wendell Snider, USFJ senior enlisted leader, toured the 35th Medical Group building at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Oct. 8, 2021. The tour included a highlight of the COVID Cell and advocate for support to improve local exceptional family member program processes. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Joao Marcus Costa)

MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan --

U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Ricky Rupp, U.S. Forces Japan (USFJ) and 5th Air Force commander, and Command Chief Master Sgt. Wendell Snider, USFJ senior enlisted leader, visited Misawa Air Base, Japan, to experience the 35th Fighter Wings mission while meeting members of Team Misawa, Oct. 7 - 8, 2021.

During their visit, Rupp and Snider toured multiple facilities to learn about how each unit’s mission tied into USFJ and 5th Air Force’s mission to support the U.S.-Japan alliance, and defend Japan.

“I was impressed by the professionalism and dedication of the Airmen I saw today,” said Rupp. “Misawa Air Base plays a critical role as a credible deterrent, ready to respond at a moment’s notice to any threat, crisis or humanitarian disaster, enabling U.S. Forces in Japan to remain the cornerstone of stability and security in the Indo-Pacific region.”

The locations toured included the 35th Maintenance Group, 35th Medical Group, 35th Fighter Wing Headquarters, 35th Force Support Squadron, and Edgren Middle/High School.

During the visit, Rupp learned about the 35th Fighter Wing’s mission to protect United States interests in the Pacific and defend Japan; deter adversaries through our presence, readiness and ability to project agile combat air power. 

In direct support of the overarching mission, leaders spoke with the 35th Civil Engineer Squadrons snow removal team. The team must plow Misawa AB, the snowiest U.S. air base, every winter; and this task required extra dedication during record breaking snowfall at Misawa AB in December 2020. Round the clock snow removal ensures mission success by allowing Team Misawa to arrive to work and launch combat ready aircraft throughout the winter season.

“The capability of the 35th Civil Engineer Squadron and what our Airmen must do daily to keep the mission going is remarkable,” said Snider. “I think it shows the technical expertise of the Airmen. They were able to show me the equipment and get me to be able to operate it during my visit.”

Rupp and Snider also observed year-round Morale, Welfare and Recreation programs that encourage Airmen and their families to take on the role of Ambassador and engage in outside activities, allowing Team Misawa to build a resilient community.

By the end of their visit, Rupp and Snider had a greater understanding of the various missions across Misawa AB.

“Misawa’s actions continue to push the evolution of the US-Japan alliance to stay ahead of growing regional threats,” said Rupp. “I’m humbled to be serving with this top-notch team.”

In agreement with Rupp, Snider said, “One thing I'm left with is that our warfighters are good at what they do.”