In front of a packed audience of military members past and present, members of the local community and the media, Marine Corp Col. Arthur Tomassetti, vice commander for the 33rd Fighter Wing, served as master of ceremonies.
Speakers at the event included 33rd FW Commander Col. Andrew Toth, Larry Lawson, executive vice president at Lockheed Martin, Sen. Don Gaetz, R-Niceville, and Gen. Edward A. Rice, Jr., commander of Air Education Training Command.
Lawson spoke about the unique nature of the F35 mission, which is a combined effort between the Air Force, Navy and Marine Corp. Dubbed the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF), Lockheed Martin has produced three variations of the aircraft, including a short take off vertical landing (STOVL) version for the Marine Corp.
For more on this story, see the September 1 issue of the Navarre Press or subscribe online.