Monday, January 27, 2014

Cannon In the News: So Long, Spooky

From the Usual USAF Source...
Cannon Spectres Pass the Torch
 
Eight AC-130H Spectre gunships taxi into position on the flightline prior to the final AC-130H mission conducted at Cannon Air Force Base, N.M., Jan. 16. The C-130 began its operational service with the Air Force in 1956 and AC-130 development began in the early 1960s.(U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Matthew Plew)
The venerable AC-130H gunship bowed-out with an eight ship formation flight marking its last mission with the 16th Special Operations Squadron at Cannon AFB, N. M., this month. "Being able to get all eight of the AC-130H aircraft up is remarkably unique and required everyone to play a vital role," said 16th SOS Commander Lt. Col. James Mott, after the Jan. 16 flight. The unit is retiring the legacy AC-130H as part of Air Force Special Operations Command's transition to the new AC-130J, which is due to begin operational service in 2015. "As we close the books of the C-130H aircraft, we remember how phenomenal this plane was for more than 40 years," Mott said. "Now we transition onto newer models of the C-130 and begin to write new chapters of Air Force history." (Cannon report by SrA Xavier Lockley)
One assumes it's just Cannon that's ceasing operations with the AC-130H and other AFSOC units will continue to fly the current Spectre platform until the AC-130J comes on-line next year.  

There are seven high-res photos of the Spectre and the final mission ceremony at the "Cannon report" link, you should go look.  Those pics include one that would have had EVERY first sergeant I ever had during my career tearing their hair... assuming they had hair; some did not... out.  Why?  Because there are at least four people with their hands in their pockets in the group photo of the 16th SOS.  "Not your father's Air Force," indeed.

14 comments:

  1. The question is...
    Why, then, are pockets so strategically located?

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    1. To tempt you, IT... to tempt you.

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  2. Part of being Special is that the rules don't apply to us. thppppppdddtttt!

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    1. Heh. I think I may have heard that before. Somewhere. ;-)

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  3. When I first started flying we had squadron baseball caps. We got a new Wing commander and he wanted everyone to wear scarves. It was actually a better idea. So I liked the cun...er garrison cap because you could just stick it in a zoomy-suit leg pocket. I never put the scarf on unless some officer ordered me. Then one day the aircraft commander said we didn't have to wear scarves, because he thought they were stupid. Instantly I put mine on, and was the only one who wore it during the deployment. The AC was pissed at me, but he couldn't order me to remove it. I love being au contraire...

    Funny thing, soon as we closed the doors, everyone wore baseball caps during the flight... I only had to wear my helmet and parachute when the doors were open in flight, then back to baseball cap (Yankee's doncha know)...

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    1. I had serious issues with 35-10 back in the day (the personal appearance reg, it's something different now). I was ALWAYS getting my sensitive body parts caught in the wringer because of my hair, and it was pretty stupid on my part. I'm reminded of that ol' song: "I fought the law, and the law won." It always does.

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  4. My Marine barracks in Okinawa was right next to an AF barracks. Hate to break it to you Buck, but the hands in pockets thing in the AF isn't a new phenomenon. We were always saw the Zoomies with their hands in pockets. Hell, they had air conditioning...and we heard they also had beer in their pop dispensers...not confirmed 'cause we didn't commingle...but totally believable...

    Not name of photog in story...ya' just can't make that shitte up.

    tim

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    1. We DID have beer machines in the barracks, Small-Tee. I can attest to that. ;-)

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  5. "Note name..."... oy vie...

    tim

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    1. I got ya. I do that stuff ALL the time.

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  6. Pockets? From at least 1967 (when I joined da Army) we always called them Air Force gloves.

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    1. Heh. And the beat goes ON... ;-)

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  7. SOME never seem to change...as the French say La Plus la change, plus c'est la meme chose..

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Just be polite... that's all I ask.