Joint Forces Training Base - Los Alamitos

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Los Alamitos AAF
Los Alamitos Army Airfield photo D Ramey Logan.jpg
Aerial view of the base
Airport typeMilitary
OperatorCalifornia National Guard
LocationLos Alamitos, California
Elevation AMSL32 ft / 10 m
Coordinates33°47′24″N 118°03′05″W / 33.79000°N 118.05139°W / 33.79000; -118.05139Coordinates: 33°47′24″N 118°03′05″W / 33.79000°N 118.05139°W / 33.79000; -118.05139
Direction Length Surface
ft m
4L/22R 5,902 1,799 PEM
4R/22L 8,001 2,439 Asphalt/Concrete
Sources: Official website[1] and FAA[2]
NAS Los Alamitos in the mid-1940s.
Los Alamitos Army Airfield in 2011

Joint Forces Training Base - Los Alamitos is a joint base in Los Alamitos, California. Formerly operated as a Naval Air Station, the base contains the Los Alamitos Army Airfield and is sometimes called by that name. The base is also known as JFTB - Los Al or just JFTB. The base is 1,319 acres and "supports 850 full-time employees and more than 6,000 National Guard and Reserve troops."[3]


JFTB has an MWR with billeting, a pub, and a banquet hall.[4] The pub, known as Fiddler's Green, is the last remaining military pub in Orange County.[5]

JFTB has significant training facilities, including an Engagement Skills Trainer, a Virtual Convoy Operations Trainer, a HMMWV Egress Assistance Trainer, a Laser Marksmanship Training System, and a Close Combat Tactical Trainer.[6]

Los Alamitos Army Airfield[edit]

The airfield has two runways:

  • Runway 4L/22R: 5,902 x 150 ft. (1,799 x 46 m), Surface: PEM
  • Runway 4R/22L: 8,001 x 200 ft. (2,439 x 61 m), Surface: Asphalt/Concrete

Aquatics Training Center[edit]

The JFTB Aquatics Training Center is an Olympic-size swimming pool 50m by 25m, which offers year-round lap swimming, swim lessons, adult fitness classes, and youth programs including the Seal Beach Swim Club.[7] The women's national water polo team regularly practices at the facility.[8]


Civil Air Patrol[edit]

JFTB is home to multiple Civil Air Patrol units, including Long Beach Senior Squadron 150, Los Alamitos Glider Training Squadron 41, Los Alamitos Cadet Squadron 153, and South Coast Group 7.[9][10][11]


In 1942, JFTB became a naval air base in to train fighter pilots during World War II. In 1973, JFTB was transferred to the U.S. Army.[12]

On 16 July 1957, then-Major John H. Glenn, Jr., USMC, set the Transcontinental air speed record, flying a F8U-1P Crusader from NAS Los Alamitos to NAS Floyd Bennett Field, New York, in 3 hours, 23 minutes, and 8.4 seconds. Project Bullet, as the mission was called, provided both the first transcontinental flight to average supersonic speed, and the first continuous transcontinental panoramic photograph of the United States. Glenn was awarded his fifth Distinguished Flying Cross for the mission.

The senior command on post is the 40th Infantry Division (Mechanized), headquartered in the large, prominent building facing the flagpole and main entrance artery.

The base served as the starting line for the 14th season of the hit CBS Reality TV Show The Amazing Race.[13] The base's status as an alternate landing area for Air Force One was mentioned in a West Wing episode.

The base hosts the annual Southland Credit Union Los Alamitos "Race on the Base," a charity event including a 5K Run, 5K Walk, 10K Run, 10K Skate/ Handcycle / Wheelchair, Mission: 1K Kids Run, Jr. Reverse Triathlon and Reverse Triathlon. The Southland Credit Union Los Alamitos "Race on the Base" is the largest reverse triathlon event in the country.[14]

On the south edge of Runway 22L is the Navy Golf Course, where Tiger Woods honed his game as a youth.[15][16][17] The 18-hole Destroyer Course opened in 1966 and an executive nine holes was later added. The former military-only facility opened for public play in 2004.

In May 2010, JFTB's Liberty Theater was the site of the grisly murder of local resident Samuel Herr.[18] The crime made international news, and the killer was subsequently sentenced to death.[19]

In 2014, President Barack Obama landed at JFTB in Air Force One in order to give the commencement speech at UC Irvine.[20]

In April 2015, Brig Gen Nathaniel S. Reddicks became the first installation commander from the California Air National Guard.[21] After this command, Reddicks retired from federal service and joined the California State Military Reserve, "making him the first federally recognized general officer to join the CSMR since the Korean War."[22]

In October 2016, Brig. Gen. John W. Lathrop took command of the base.[23]

In August 2017, Colonel Julian H. Bond took command of the base.

References[edit] Colonel Julian Bond assumes command of Joint Forces Training Base September 2017.

  1. ^ "Los Alamitos Army Airfield". California National Guard. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  2. ^ FAA Airport Master Record for SLI (Form 5010 PDF), effective 2007-07-05
  3. ^ "Brig. Gen. John W. Lathrop Assumes Command of JFTB Los Alamitos". California National Guard. Retrieved 12 October 2016.
  4. ^ "Billeting MWR". California National Guard. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  5. ^ "The Pub at Fidder's Green". OC Weekly. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  6. ^ "JFTB Operations and Training". California National Guard. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  7. ^ "Aquatics". City of Los Alamitos. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  8. ^ "Joint Forces Training Base". Los Alamitos Area Chamber of Commerce. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  9. ^ "Contact Us". Los Alamitos Cadet Squadron 153. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  10. ^ "Civil Air Patrol Locator". Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  11. ^ "Official Website". Civil Air Patrol. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  12. ^ Luppi, Kathleen. "Los Alamitos military base, still a formidable O.C. presence, now has a new commander". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  13. ^ Lang, Derrik (2008-08-19). "Meet the new teams on 'The Amazing Race'". Associated Press. Retrieved 2008-08-19.
  14. ^ Henderson, Shelly (2014-02-14). "Race on the Base: A great big welcome from the City of Los Alamitos". OC Breeze. Retrieved 2014-06-04.
  15. ^ "Golf lessons at The Navy Golf Course". Navy Golf Course. Archived from the original on April 17, 2013. Retrieved January 28, 2013.
  16. ^ Crothers, Tim (March 25, 1991). "Golf Cub". Sports Illustrated: 56.
  17. ^ Shipnuck, Alan (April 3, 2000). "Roots". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved January 28, 2013.
  18. ^ Pelisek, Christine. "California Theater Actor Goes on Trial for Grisly Double Murder". People. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  19. ^ Collman, Ashley. "Jury recommends execution for community theater actor convicted of decapitating Army veteran and then murdering victim's friend to pay for his wedding". Daily Mail. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  20. ^ Luppi, Kathleen. "Los Alamitos military base, still a formidable O.C. presence, now has a new commander". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  21. ^ Keith, Sharon. "Los Alamitos Joint Forces Training Base has a new commander". Orange County Register. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  22. ^ "Brig. Gen. John W. Lathrop Assumes Command of JFTB Los Alamitos". California National Guard. Retrieved 12 October 2016.
  23. ^ "Brig. Gen. John W. Lathrop Assumes Command of JFTB Los Alamitos". California National Guard. Retrieved 12 October 2016.

External links[edit]