Inland Empire Aviation Roundtable


Aerial Refueling



Presented by Lt. Col. Walter Fus USAF (Ret)
March Field Air Museum Library – Wednesday, September 18th  - 7 pm 


Lt. Col. Walter Fus retired Airline Captain and USAF Command Pilot will speak on the history of aerial refueling from the earliest attempts to Vietnam, the Cold War and beyond in addition to his personal experiences during his military career as a KC-135A Stratotanker and C-141B Starlifter pilot. 

In the ten years between 1972 and 1982, Lt. Col. Fus flew KC-135A Stratotankers, first as a line pilot then as the Chief of Training and Instructor Pilot for the 22nd Bomb Wing.  By 1980 he was conducting  upgrade and basic aircrew training for the 22nd Air Refueling Squadron as well as simulator training for re-fueler pilots in addition to academic classes, including the 22nd Bomb Wing Instrument Refresher Training course given to all March Air Force Base pilots including those flying the B-52 Stratofortress heavy bomber.  

In 1982, he left the active duty Air Force and joined the 730th Military Airlift Reserve Squadron at Norton AFB flying the C-141B Starlifter jet transport. At that time Lt. Col Fus was hired by Jet America Airlines out of Long Beach Ca to fly the relatively new MD80.  Upgraded to Captain in 5 months he remained a Captain when Alaska Airlines merged with Jet America in 1986.  

Lt. Col. Fus was ordered to active duty during Operation Desert Storm in 1990. Serving for just under a year flying the C-141B, he retired from the Air Force 1992.  Returning to civilian life he flew with Alaska Airlines until his retirement in 2014.

With ten years in the KC-135A and the C-141B each, and 15 each in the MD80 and all modern models of Boeing 737, Lt. Col Fus is a highly accomplished aviator with an accumulated total of over 30,000 flight hours in addition to just over 1000 hours of general aviation time as a CFI, CFII, and multiengine instructor. For the last 5 years, Lt. Col. Fus has proudly served as a Volunteer Docent at the March Field Air Museum.




The Inland Empire Aviation Roundtable is sponsored by the March Field Air Museum, and is dedicated to the local aviation and aerospace community. Monthly meetings are open to the public, with subjects of interest to the air-minded public presented including aviation and aerospace history, both civil and military, as well as new developments in these fields. Parking and admission are free for this event.


The March Field Air Museum is located in Riverside, California, at 22550 Van Buren Blvd. (at the intersection of Van Buren Blvd. and the 215 Freeway) adjacent to March Air Reserve Base


More Information: (951) 902-5949 or visit


Aerial Refueling
IEAR September 2019.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [31.7 KB]