C-130J Super Hercules Reaches Millionth Flight Hour Milestone - 143d Airlift Wing Recognized for Their Contribution
By Technical Sgt Arthur DesLauriers, 143 AW/PA
/ Published August 16, 2013
06/28/2013 -- Members of the 143d Airlift Wing along with, United States Senator Jack Reed, Major General Kevin McBride, Adjutant General Rhode Island National Guard, Colonel Arthur Floru, Commander, 143d Airlift Wing, former Wing Commander, Colonel (ret) Larry Gallogly and several distinguished retires celebrated the 1 million flight hour milestone of the C130J Super Hercules.
The C-130J is the standard by which all other airlift is measured in terms of availability, flexibility and reliability. C-130Js currently are deployed in two combat theaters and are operating at a very high tempo efficiently and reliably. In non-combat -- but equally harsh environments -- C-130Js are often the first to support humanitarian missions such as search and rescue, aerial firefighting in the U.S., and delivering relief supplies after earthquakes, hurricanes, typhoons and tsunami around the world.
"This is another great day, it's another validation ceremony at home to show and represent true champions and 20 years of the full evolution cycle," said Colonel Arthur Floru, Wing Commander 143d Airlift Wing, referencing the 20 years it has been since the 143d first decided to pursue the next generation of C-130 Hercules, the C-130J.
Upon presenting Colonel Floru with the first million mile coin, from the limited edition production, Mr. Ray Fayjay Lockheed Martin's Director of US Government Air Mobility Business Development remarked that presenting the 143d with the first coin was by design as there were several notable firsts for the C-130J model which were completed by the 143d. He listed some of the firsts; First USAF C-130J Cargo Mission to Europe, First USAF Stretch Assault Qualifications C-130J, First AMC Stretch C-130J Dirt Landing and most notably the First USAF/ANG Deployment of the C-130J to Southwest Asia and First C-130J Combat Mission and Combat Air Drop.
Former Wing Commander Col. (Ret) Larry Gallogy, Lockheed Martin's Director of USAF Mobility Program said, "while managing unit's in the US, no doubt Rhode Island is leading the charge."
In closing Mr. Fajay thanked the men and women of the 143d for all they do stating," the employees at Lockheed Martin salute you." He further extended a personal thank you to the members of the 143d AW for their dedication and service.
Fifteen countries have chosen the C-130J as their airlift of preference. The 1 million hours were an accumulation of hours logged through numerous combat, special operations and humanitarian missions. The first flight of a C-130J was on April 5, 1996 with the millionth flight hour being logged at the end of April 2013.