"It's great to be in a great unit and have this last flight," Hettich said. "I appreciate everything from the battalion."

Upon his return to Gray Army Airfield, Hettich was greeted by the battalion leadership, fellow pilots, Soldiers from the 1-229th ARB and members of the Joint Base Lewis-McChord fire department.

Per tradition in the aviation branch, pilots return to a wet welcome as they are drenched with a fire hose. Hettich received the same fate as he dismounted his airframe for the last time.