King of the Airpark

An HC-130P Combat King rescue tanker joined the heritage airpark at Moody AFB, Ga., representing one of the base’s important, but previously absent, missions on display. The aircraft, serial number 65-0988, was “part of eight different rescue squadrons over the years,” said 23rd Wing Historian Kenneth Sloat in a base release. It deployed for “most major conflicts” since 1966, including a tour during the Vietnam War, “and has definitely earned its position” in the airpark, added Sloat. The Air Force retired this HC-130P from Moody’s 71st Rescue Squadron in 2013 as part of the 23rd Wing’s transition to the HC-130J. It wasn’t displayed initially because the Air Force used its wings for still-operational aircraft. “The wings needed to be replaced … but the base was short,” said airpark custodian SSgt. Jordan Keller. Moody plans to eventually display an HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopter to round out the rescue presence by 2018, states the June 12 release. The HC-130 joined the airpark in May.