McChord AFB

McChord AFB is one of the two military bases merged in order to form the more powerful Joint Base Lewis-McChord. The other base is Fort Lewis. The two facilities were forced to merge on February, 1-st, 2010, after a new commission dealing with the base realignment and closure from 2005. The new base is one of the 12 such merges throughout the United States of America. The base is run by the US Army and is located about 15 km from Tacoma, in Washington.  It is the one and only power projection platform located in the western side of the Rocky Mountains. It is strategically placed between three large ports, having an easy and quick access to water. The base is better known among the US Army for its new and advanced cargo aircraft C 17 Globemaster III, ready to perform combat operations and humanitarian acts in any part of the world. Just like most military bases, this one is closed to the public too. However, it is open in an annual ceremony – Open House, when the visitors have the chance to visit the local museum. They need early reservations though.

McChord AFB was named in the memory of William Caldwell McChord. Its history dates back to 1927. The authorities decided to open a military airfield close to a military base – Fort Lewis. The groundbreaking ceremony for the new airfield took place in the spring of 1930. It was established as Tacoma Field. It was renamed to what it is today in 1941, about three years after it was taken over by the US government. During Word War II the primary mission of the base was to deal with the security measures around the country. However, after the attacks on Pearl Harbor and other Hawaiian islands, the airfield was equipped with more bombardment units to perform anti submarine incursions. The first victim “fell” right before the 1941 Christmas, on December, 24-th, when one of the bombers sank a Japanese submarine with 4 bombs. The unit was later deployed, in order to prepare for the famous Doolittle Raid over Japan.

The base was just as important during the Cold War and for a lot of humanitarian acts. As a matter of fact, it has a richer history when it comes to humanitarian actions.

McChord AFB currently hosts the 627-th Air Base Group, dealing with all the services for the Air Force, from training and organization to deployment and equipments. The unit includes over 1000 troops constantly training and always ready to be deployed whenever the situation arises. When it comes to the internal objectives, the unit has the role to ensure the good going of almost 40000 soldiers, more than 50000 family members, close to 20000 retired troops and 10000 civilians employed in various fields.
The base also hosts the 62-nd Airlift Wing, which is actually the main active unit on site. Its primary mission is to deal with the Air Force operations throughout the United States of America.