86th Flying Training Squadron welcomes new commander

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Nicholas Larsen
  • 47th Flying Training Wing Public Affairs
86th Flying Training Squadron (FTS) Airmen bid farewell to Lt. Col. Jackson Ranes, and welcomed their new commander Lt. Col. Tory Lodmell, during a change of command ceremony here, June 14, 2024.

Col. Joseph McCane, 47th Operations Group commander, presided over the ceremony, noting the pivotal role the 86th FTS contributes to the production of pilots and the work Ranes contributed to keeping pilot production numbers high.

“Jackson, I do believe that your time in special operations prepared you well for commanding a squadron through the turbulence of change you experienced during your short time here,” said McCane. “Despite all the change, you have led with dignity and respect and your students sing the praises of the 86th instructor pilots in the end of course critiques.”

Lodmell joins Team XL from the 721st Contingency Response Squadron, previously serving as the Director of Staff since August of 2022. As the commander of the 86th FTS, he now oversees a squadron that has graduated over 360 students in the previous command.

“While this event is known as a change of command, I see this more as a continuation of command,” said Lodmell. “While the transition will continue to be tricky, like you, I intend to be calm during the storm.”

The 86th FTS originated as the 86th Bombardment Squadron in January of 1941 at the now Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Tacoma, WA. During the 86th's time as a unit, it has served on three continents, flown eight different types of aircraft, operated out of 34 locations, changed missions half a dozen times and has been deactivated three separate times. Through all this, it continues its mission of pilot training today.

Ranes served as commander of 86th FTS since December 2022, and will be moving to become the executive officer of the Air Force Special Operations Commander at Hurlburt Field, Florida.

“I want to express my deepest gratitude to each and every one of you for your dedication, professionalism and unwavering commitment to me and each other,” said Ranes. “My family has grown by about 70. It has been an honor to serve as your commander, and I look forward to cheering on your successes from the sidelines. Lobos lead the way.”