Fairbanks pilot returns for Air Force exercise

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by Your Alaska Link News Team

An Air Force fighter pilot with roots in Fairbanks is back in his hometown for a training exercise.

Capt. James Collins is stationed at Osan Air Base in South Korea but is taking part in Red Flag training exercises at Eielson Air Force Base.

Reports say that when he landed his F-16 on June 4, he was greeted by his wife, daughters and 9-month-old son.

Collins grew up in Ester south of Fairbanks and dreamed of being a fighter pilot like this grandfather.

He's been in the Air Force for eight and a half years but had not flown a fighter in Alaska before.

He says he's enjoying flying over the 65,000-square mile Joint Pacific Alaska Range Complex, the largest training range in America.