Jackson High School alum graduates Air Force pilot training

Updated: Jan. 5, 2018 at 1:54 PM CST
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JACKSON, MO (KFVS) - Air Force Capt. Joseph R. Wiginton has graduated from Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training at Vance Air Force Base, Oklahoma.

The 54-week pilot training program begins with a six-week preflight phase of academics and physical training to prepare students for flight. The second phase, primary training, is conducted in the single-engine, turboprop T-6A Texan II.

Primary training takes approximately 23 weeks and includes 254 hours of ground instruction, 27 hours in the flight simulator and 89 hours in the T-6A aircraft.

After primary training, students select, by order of merit, advanced training in the fighter-bomber or airlift-tanker track.

Training for the fighter track is done in the T-38C Talon, a tandem-seat, twin-engine supersonic jet.

The airlift-tanker track uses the T-1A Jayhawk, the military version of a multi-place Beech Jet 400 business jet.

Both tracks are approximately 26 weeks and are designed to best train pilots for a successful transition to their follow-on aircraft and missions.

Wiginton is the son of Tom Wiginton of Jackson, Missouri.

He is a 2008 graduate of Jackson Senior High School. He earned a bachelor's degree in 2012 from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville.

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