JOINT BASE LANGLEY-EUSTIS, Va. --
President Donald J. Trump greeted a crowd of service members, their families and friends as he made his first official visit to Joint Base Langley-Eustis and the Tidewater military community March 2.
Trump was welcomed by Maj. Gen. John K. McMullen, Air Combat Command vice commander; Col. Caroline M. Miller, 633rd Air Base Wing commander; and Col. Pete M. Fesler, 1st Fighter Wing commander.
Trump was accompanied by the Secretary of Defense James Mattis. Shortly after their arrival, both Trump and Mattis boarded Marine One for a short helicopter ride to the Newport News Shipyard for a tour of the USS Gerald R. Ford, the newest class of U.S. Navy aircraft carriers.
Trump’s visit comes following the release of the administration’s 2018 budget proposal, which included a $54 billion increase to the Department of Defense budget.
According to the 2016 JBLE economic impact analysis, the installation generated $2.1 billion in economic impact, including more than $470 million of annual job creation value.
“Joint Base Langley-Eustis is a strategic hub for national defense, right here in Hampton Roads. The 633rd Air Base Wing is an Air Force-led mission support wing which serves more than 60 U.S. Air Force and Army units. Joint basing promotes and fosters a more cohesive operational partnership between the Air Force and Army while preserving mission capabilities and unique service identities,” Miller said.
"As America's vanguard air dominance provider, the 1st Fighter Wing delivers F-22 Raptor airpower worldwide. As the oldest wing in the Air Force, the 1st FW continues its tradition to air superiority which began in World War I and continues with current fifth-generation operations across the global spectrum of conflict. Anytime we can showcase our first-class raptor fleet to the president and his staff, we're proud to do so," Fesler said.
The city of Hampton is home to a higher percentage of military veterans than any other U.S. city according to census data.