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Final Flight: Airmen ready C-130E for airpark

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Amber Kelly-Woodward
  • 375th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
A C-130E from Little Rock, Ark., landed for the last time May 12 at Scott. The plane is the fifth and final aircraft for the Scott Field Heritage Airpark.

In addition to the plane, five Airmen from the 19th Maintenance Squadron at Little Rock Air Force Base came to Scott to spend three days demilitarizing the aircraft.

"We're removing (and disposing of) any hazardous materials and removing the avionics equipment that can be put back into supply and reused," said Master Sgt. Guy Hamilton, 19th MXS crew chief. "I've been in for 22 years, and I've never done this before. There are no regulations, so this is every maintainer's dream to be able to pull parts off of a plane and not worry about it."

He said the aircraft are chosen for display purposes based on how many hard landings it has done, because it causes damage to the airframe. This 47-year-old workhorse has logged 25,271 flight hours, 8,536 full-stop landings and 13,091 total landings. When the cargo plane was activated it was capable of holding 105 airborne troops and 155,000 pounds. The Air Force has now moved toward using the C-130J models.

Capt. Jonathan Fox, 375th Operations Support Squadron Maintenance Flight commander, expressed his gratitude by saying, "We are very thankful to them for coming here to do what needs to be done; we couldn't have done this without them."

Scott does not have a maintenance squadron, but rather a single 375th OSS aircraft maintenance specialist, Staff Sgt. Michael Herbert, who functions as the historical property custodian for seven historical static aircraft at Scott. He was the coordinator for the Little Rock Airmen's visit. The 375th OSS will continue to prep the aircraft for placement at the park, which is scheduled for mid-summer.

Sergeant Hamilton said his team enjoyed the St. Louis area while they were here.

"We like Scott, it's a pretty part of the country. We went to the Arch and did the whole tourist thing."

The other team members were: Staff Sgts. Chance Cunningham, Chris Kaker and William Ford, and Airman 1st Class Jeff Wilson.