The last two C-130H transports assigned to Dyess AFB, Tex., departed the base last week for their new home at Little Rock AFB, Ark., as part of Dyess’ ongoing transition to the C-130J. “It’s a bittersweet day,” remarked Col. Walter Ward, Dyess’ 317th Airlift Group commander, of the airplanes’ departure on Sept. 26, in a base release. “We’re not only saying goodbye to the H models that have had a great history here for 37 years, but we are losing flight engineers and navigators” as well, he added. In March 1975, Dyess received the first C-130H to roll off of Lockheed Martin’s assembly line in Marietta, Ga., according to the release. Capt. Christopher Dorough—son of the pilot who ferried the first C-130H to Dyess—piloted the final C-130H that left the Texas base. Lockheed Martin on Sept. 13 delivered the 23rd of Dyess’ planned 28 C-130Js. (Dyess report by A1C Charles Rivezzo)
The F-35 Joint Program Office has officially announced plans to issue multiple sole-source contracts to Pratt & Whitney to upgrade the fighter’s F135 engine—a widely expected move after Pentagon officials indicated they would do so earlier this year instead of developing an entirely new engine.