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30 Years of AWACS: Airmen who have flown, operated, and maintained the E-3 Sentry Airborne Warning and Control System aircraft over the last 30 years gathered at Tinker AFB, Okla., this weekend, along with a host of distinguished officials, to celebrate the milestone. Air Combat Command boss, Gen. Ronald Keys recalled that AWACS initially would just "point the fighters in the right direction; now it can do so much more." He called it a "gateway" to process information, ultimately sent to the larger force. A release from the 552nd Air Control Wing highlights the events, including a memorial ceremony honoring the airmen who died on the sole E-3 crash in the AWACS 30-year history.