For the last two years, Brigadier General Larry New has been the commander of Tyndall Air Force Base. Now, the man at the helm is Brigadier General Jack Egginton, a command pilot with more than 3,200 hours in the cockpit of the F-15 and F-16.
"I've been flying the F-16 for a while, a little baby jet, so it's nice to be back in the big leagues and to be here, flying the eagle," said Egginton.
As for his biggest challenge, Egginton says it will be to maintain the standard of excellence his predecessors, like General New, established at Tyndall.
"Within the F-15 community, people fight for the opportunity to come here and participate in the great mission we have here. With the F-A 22 here, this is where it's at. This is where air dominance is built, maintained and perfected," said Egginton.
Egginton spent part of his childhood at Tyndall. His father was stationed here while he was in the 6th, 7th and 8th grades.
"My fondest memories of my childhood are right here at Tyndall. The marina is still there. Now, I've got, I can show you, I've still got scars on my arm where I fell down in the jetty out there at the marina fishing. I used to go out there every weekend, fishing so part of my flesh and blood is attached to this marina, right out here by the housing area at Tyndall Air Force Base," said Egginton.
While serving as commander, Egginton is setting his sights on a new goal: flying the Raptor.
"Hopefully, down the road, the F-A 22, which would be a dream come true for any fighter pilot, especially for some older fighter pilot like myself."
Egginton comes to Tyndall from Qatar. When he arrived at Tyndall Monday, he says it was the first time he had seen rain in eight months.
Brigadier General New is off to Larissa, Greece to work with NATO and help with security at the upcoming Olympic games.