HomeNewsArticle Display

ANG units fly first, last C-130 deployments

A Charlotte Air National Guard C-130H Hercules taxis down the runway at an undisclosed location in Southwest Asia April 5, 2017. The Charlotte ANG is currently flying its last Hercules mission as it prepares to transition to the C-17 Globemaster III. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Andrew Park)

A Charlotte Air National Guard C-130H Hercules taxis down the runway at an undisclosed location in Southwest Asia April 5, 2017. The Charlotte ANG is currently flying its last Hercules mission as it prepares to transition to the C-17 Globemaster III. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Andrew Park)

SOUTHWEST ASIA (AFNS) -- Big changes are in the works for two Air National Guard units deployed to the 737th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron at the 386th Air Expeditionary Wing in Southwest Asia. The Connecticut ANG has transitioned from the A-10 Thunderbolt II and the C-21 Cougar to the C-130H Hercules, which it is currently flying on its first C-130 deployment. On the other hand, the Charlotte ANG, out of North Carolina, will be flying its last Hercules mission as it prepares to transition to the C-17 Globemaster III.

Whether big or small, change brings many challenges. In the case of flying new aircraft, these challenges include incorporating new procedures and personnel requirements, among others.

“On a C-17 you don’t have navigators or engineers, so just the manning document itself is going to change,” explained Lt. Col. Gary Dodge, the 737th EAS commander. “The logistics – the buildings, the training, the air frames – it’s a huge puzzle. Trying to make that transition is challenging, but I’m sure it’ll be successful.”

One piece of this puzzle is training maintainers in the skills they’ll need to keep their new aircraft flying sorties. For Charlotte ANG members, this means learning the ins and outs of the Globemaster III, while Connecticut ANG members focus on the Hercules.

“You’re basically taking people with different skill sets and teaching them about the C-130, which is an extremely difficult airplane to employ, just because of the diverse role,” said Maj. Paul Fiasconaro, the 737th EAS director of operations.

This diverse role includes everything from air drops to flights requiring night vision goggles. Furthermore, many of the Connecticut ANG pilots are used to taking off and landing on larger runways, but C-130 missions often require landing on a small dirt strip, Fiasconaro explained.

Although the Connecticut ANG has been flying C-130s since 2013, a deployment to Southwest Asia in support of Operation Inherent Resolve has provided them lots of opportunities to fly sorties and gain experience with their new aircraft. Additionally, they work closely with the Charlotte ANG to learn from their experiences with the Hercules.

“Our aircrew, our maintenance folks are all learning from Charlotte (ANG Airmen) so it’s taking a squadron that’s very new in the C-130 up against a squadron that’s been doing it for a very long time and doing it very well,” said Fiasconaro.

Armed with these advantages and opportunities to learn and grow, the two units have much to look forward to, whether it’s their first or last deployment with the C-130.

Dodge said he and other members of the Charlotte ANG recognize the historical significance of this deployment, and look forward to not only flying one last C-130 deployment but also ensuring future success for the Connecticut ANG as well.

“We were all raising our hand to volunteer and for me to actually get the opportunity to be the commander during that time frame has been a great honor,” said Dodge. “I’m surrounded by great talent not only from Charlotte but from Connecticut as well.”

Engage

Facebook Twitter
Planning to visit the National #911PentagonMemorial? Know before you go; the memorial will close temporarily later… https://t.co/8dBsvEl1gW
RT @ActingSecAF: Op-ed | The U.S. Space Force must be independent but not insular - https://t.co/VAoFe3oXF1 https://t.co/swaIMlVVDZ
👋 Hello @CityOfDallas, #AmericasAirForce is heading your way Sept. 27. Mark your calendars and meet us there!… https://t.co/MWnoLe8aSF
RT @DeptofDefense: Can we fix it?! 👷 $106,176 is how much money the @usairforce saved, thanks to Tech. Sgt. Keith Boudreau’s innovative 3D-…
RT @WomenInAviation: USAF women pilots to provide inspiration to future female aviators https://t.co/HsQuy6RKSH #WomeninAviation #GIAD19 #F
RT @AFResearchLab: "The technologies of tomorrow will exist because of the "Basic Research" of today." Read more on how we're collaboratin…
#WatchLive today at 9:00 A.M. EDT as Barbara M. Barrett, Secretary of the Air Force nominee, testifies before Congr… https://t.co/7DsAHZSZRL
RT @PACAF: #PACAF photo of the Week! #Defenders from bases around the world converged on #Guam to drill in close quarters urban combat as…
An Oral History of 9/11 - Commander Anthony Barnes, "That first hour was mass confusion because there was so much e… https://t.co/cqmFnxB9LA
RT @ActingSecAF: We will #NeverForget the lives lost, both victims and first responders, or those Airmen who have sacrificed so much since…
RT @ActingSecAF: Thanks @JohnBoozman & @RepGaramendi for hosting an early #USAF birthday celebration & honoring the service of our #Airmen
RT @DeptofDefense: WATCH LIVE: @POTUS Donald Trump, Secretary of Defense Dr. Mark T. Esper, & Chairman @thejointstaff @USMC Gen. Joe Dunfor…
RT @AirmanMagazine: The paint job on these @48FighterWing F-15s is similar to that of the P-47 Thunderbolt, the primary aircraft used by th…
Six years ago, Lt. Col. Dan Magruder lost his friend and fellow #AirForce Veteran to suicide. Their training didn't… https://t.co/fY7sVgrriF
#ICYMI, the #F22 turned 22! Happy Birthday! https://t.co/KH4m6FnJk5
RT @Eagles: Thanks to the 177th Fighter Wing for today's amazing flyover! #AFFlyover | #FlyEaglesFly https://t.co/s7EJqi1O1l
RT @AirmanMagazine: A B-2 Spirit from @Whiteman_AFB received fuel from a KC-135 Stratotanker above the Norwegian Sea, Sept. 5, 2019. This e…
RT @JBLEnews: A life spent saving others! Check out how Jeffrey Barbour, 633rd Medical Group, became a first responder at the age of 15 and…