Air Force Retires Storied C-130

One of the oldest aircraft in USAF’s inventory, a C-130E transport with tail number 63-7865, left its home with the 86th Airlift Wing at Ramstein AB, Germany, for the last time June 4 to fly into retirement back in the US. Stars and Stripes reported June 5 that the aircraft has had an illustrious life, with more than 44 years of service, even winning an honorary Purple Heart in 1972 during the Vietnam War for the severe damage that it sustained. Its last combat sortie occurred in November 2007 in Iraq. The airplane will be stored in the “boneyard” at the Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group at Davis-Monthan AFB, Ariz. By the end of the summer, the 86th AW expects to retire five of its C-130Es, each of which entered service between 1964 and 1965. The wing is scheduled to receive its first new C-130J aircraft next spring. (Includes Ramstein report by Capt. Jeffrey Holland)