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First combat ready HC-130J arrives at D-M
The crew of the HC-130J stands at attention in front of their plane on Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., Nov. 15. The J model has new features including chaff and flare dispensers, threat detection capabilities and the ability to refuel inflight. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Michael Washburn/Released)
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First combat ready HC-130J arrives at D-M

Posted 11/16/2012   Updated 11/20/2012 Email story   Print story


by Senior Airman Michael Washburn
355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

11/16/2012 - DAVIS-MONTHAN AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. -- Making its Air Force debut, the first combat ready HC-130J Combat King II touched down on Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., Nov. 15.

The new plane was welcomed by a formation of 21 Airmen who, upon arrival of the HC-130J, rendered salutes, and a crowd waiting for the induction ceremony for the aircraft. The advanced HC-130J is specifically designed for the use of Combat Search and Rescue missions.

Davis-Monthan's receipt of the first combat ready J model, marks a significant milestone in the Rescue and Air Force community.

"This aircraft means enhanced survivability for our HH-60s and our guardian angels," said Col. Jason Hanover, 563rd Rescue Group commander, while addressing the crowd on the implementation and advantages of the HC-130J. "It means enhanced effectiveness and speed when getting to our isolated personnel when providing lifesaving medical care and support. It is a C-130 variant, but the differences make it an entirely different aircraft. I wish we could give it a different number because it is so radically advanced."

The upgrades present on the HC-130J that make it so advanced include improved navigation, threat detection and countermeasures systems. The aircraft fleet has a fully-integrated inertial navigation and global positioning system, and interior and exterior lighting that are compatible with night vision goggles. It also has forward-looking infrared, radar and missile warning receivers, chaff and flare dispensers, satellite and data-burst communications, and the ability to receive fuel inflight via a Universal Aerial Refueling Receptacle Slipway Installation.

The HC-130J replaces the HC-130P model that the 79th Rescue Squadron currently uses.

"This aircraft allows us to update our personal rescue force," said Staff Sgt. Derek Ruud, 923rd AMXS crew chief. "We'll have better capabilities which will allow us to get our mission done quicker and more effectively."

With D-M receiving the new HC-130Js, the mission ability of the 79th RQS will improve.

"We'll be able to deploy anytime, anywhere and provide 24-hour coverage," Ruud said. "The C-130s we had before were from the 1960s, so we would have problems with them breaking. We won't have that issue now. We'll be able to launch the aircraft quicker."

The 563rd RQG is a geographically separated unit of the 23rd Wing, the Air Force's only active duty rescue wing.

11/21/2012 10:43:21 AM ET
@John- The article does not state the the 563rd is a part of the 355th.
Read Again, here
11/21/2012 3:14:37 AM ET
Thanks John. You took the words right out of my mouth.
Sam, Moody AFB
11/20/2012 7:56:47 AM ET
Article is a bit misleading. The 563d RQG is a GSU of the 23d WG at Moody AFB. The 23d is the only CSAR wing not the 355th FW.
John, USA
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