Cannon Air Force Base to celebrate its new mission - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Cannon Air Force Base to celebrate its new mission

A CV-22 Osprey in a hangar at Cannon AFB, N.M., during a hangar clearance test on Sept. 25, 2007. (USAF photo by Greg Allen) A CV-22 Osprey in a hangar at Cannon AFB, N.M., during a hangar clearance test on Sept. 25, 2007. (USAF photo by Greg Allen)

(AP) Cannon Air Force Base is celebrating a new lease on life -- and so are the towns nearby in eastern New Mexico and the Texas South Plains and Panhandle.

Those towns would have suffered when the base was threatened with extinction just two years ago.

A formal change of command and change of mission ceremony Monday will mark the start of Cannon's life as a special operations base. It'll also mean big changes outside the gates of the base near Clovis, New Mexico.

Two years ago, things looked much grimmer for Clovis, Portales and smaller communities around Cannon. The Pentagon in May 2005 recommended closing the base, which has been part of the community since 1942. Closure would have eliminated more than 2,700 jobs at the base and cost an additional 2,000 indirect jobs. One study predicted that closing Cannon would mean a $98 million loss to Curry County, New Mexico, alone.

In August 2005, the Base Realignment and Closure Commission accepted the Pentagon's recommendation to send Cannon's fighter squadrons elsewhere. But it stopped short of closing it. Instead, the commission made Cannon an enclave, keeping it open in a much-reduced form while the Defense Department looked for another mission.

Last summer, the Pentagon announced the base would become the nation's second home to a special operations wing.

  • Today's Local News HeadlinesToday's Local NewsMore>>

  • Area lane closures

    Area lane closures

    Sunday, March 26 2017 11:26 PM EDT2017-03-27 03:26:50 GMT

    As we get ready to head back to work, here's a look at some area lane closures that could cause you some delays. 

    As we get ready to head back to work, here's a look at some area lane closures that could cause you some delays. 

  • Locals come together to help raise money for the Wildfire Memorial Benefit

    Locals come together to help raise money for the Wildfire Memorial Benefit

    Sunday, March 26 2017 11:25 PM EDT2017-03-27 03:25:50 GMT
    Tragedy swept through the Panhandle in early March leaving a trail of misfortune, loss and sadness. Soon after this fiery disbelief, the community quickly stepped in to help those who were affected. For weeks, local folks and organizations have put on fundraisers and events, and on Sunday, March 26, 2017, the community raised money through music at the GolldenLight Cafe. "I’m a big supportive of our community and there was such tragic loss and I wanted to do anything tha...
    Tragedy swept through the Panhandle in early March leaving a trail of misfortune, loss and sadness. Soon after this fiery disbelief, the community quickly stepped in to help those who were affected. For weeks, local folks and organizations have put on fundraisers and events, and on Sunday, March 26, 2017, the community raised money through music at the GolldenLight Cafe. "I’m a big supportive of our community and there was such tragic loss and I wanted to do anything tha...
  • Whataburger's 'Boots and Badges' event honors first responders

    Whataburger's 'Boots and Badges' event honors first responders

    Sunday, March 26 2017 9:47 PM EDT2017-03-27 01:47:56 GMT

    A local Whataburger tipped their hats to local first responders today.

    A local Whataburger tipped their hats to local first responders today.

Powered by Frankly