Wing Makes History with first “State Of Laughlin” address

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class David Phaff
  • 47th Flying Training Wing public affairs

For the first time ever the 47th Flying Training Wing commander, Col. Craig Prather gave an address to local leaders in the community about where the installation is and where it plans to progress in the coming years. Wing leadership, local law enforcement, judicial staff, educators, as well as senate and congressional staffers attended the address.

"We have an incredible community, and I am so honored that you all came tonight," said Prather, "This is a community that has a long history of taking care of their base, and all these people are the ones trying to move the ball forward here."

Over the course of the gathering, Prather talked about the wing’s production of pilots, improvements to the installation and how the wing is innovating instruction behind the Air Force’s best and brightest leaders, all while still practicing safe COVID-19 guidelines. He described goals for increasing pilot production to surpass the previous year in order to exceed the Air Force's needs.

Laughlin is the number one pilot production engine in the Air Force and Prather wants to have the base reflect the value it brings to the Department of Defense. One of Prather’s top priorities is to not only generate world-class pilots, but to foster an environment where all Airmen and their families thrive. While also strives to gain the resources necessary to meet all its goals. While working hand in hand with the civilian population to do so and make Americas pilots.

During the event, upcoming projects, such as constructing sun shades for the aircraft to help protect them and keep them functional, were discussed. A project to renovate the enlisted dorms, student dorms, and on base housing to help improve the quality of life for the service members stationed here.

Toward the end of the address, Prather enthusiastically spoke about working with the community on future projects such as the upcoming 80th anniversary of Laughlin AFB in 2022, creating a grand entrance for those approaching the base, and the plans of creating a new STEM school for both children from the base and the local community.

The address ended with multiple members of the community reciprocating the positive attitude Prather brought with him to the base and how connected the base and the city of Del Rio are.