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A Models


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Nice pics, but it\'s too bad the tail numbers aren\'t visible in any of them.

Don R.

Don, tail numbers are not going to be visible in pictures of camouflaged Herks unless they were sitting on the ramp when the photos were taken. The tail numbers were only a few inches high - called "subdued." Later on they started putting larger numbers on when they started using the tail codes a la fighter squadron practice. Back before they sta4trted camouflaging everything, the TAC, PACAF and MATS airplanes had the last three numbers painted on the sides behind the cockpit.

My personal take on airplanes is that it's the crews, not the airplanes, that are most important. Tail numbers are just that, numbers in a log. It's like the "airplane that got the Purple Heart." As far as I know, that was done by a crew chief at CCK but I would bet that every C-130 in any of the three wings - 374th/6315th Ops Group, 314th and 463rd as well as the 815th squadron - would have qualified for a bunch of Purple Hearts if they were awarded to airplanes, as well as several from the 464th, 64th and 516th. I've got a picture of a B-24 that I'm especially proud of but only because it is the one that my dad's crew flew on most of their missions over Germany.

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Updated 12/22/08 I just got 57-0472! Now i need 10. Bob

I thought I\'d throw in a pitch to see if I can get some help locating pictures of A Models.

Any pics are great but these 11A\'s I have nopt been able to fiind:

56-0474 PACAF A, burned on the ramp at Naha in 1963

56-0476 PACAF A, later NH ANG and RG AFRES bird To SVAF now stored at Tan Son Nhut

56-0477 PACAF A shot down on a Blind Bat flight Laos in 1968

56-0488 Sewart A crashed in the traffic pattern at Sewart in in 1962

56-0510 PACAF A hit mountain in Laos in 1970 flown by Air America

56-0515 USAFE A crashed in the traffic Pattern Bitburg GE in 1965

56-0526 USAFE A mid air in France 1958

57-0467 PACAF A hit a bulddozer on take off Dak To Written off after landing Cam Ranh Bay in 1967.

57-0468 PACAF A crashed in the traffic pattern Ashiya Japan in 1959

57-0472 PACAF A later CA ANG A to SVAF and returned to USAF to US Army at Ft Bragg for a paratroop trainer. May still be there? Could someone at Pope check it out?

57-0475 PACAF A first USAF loss in SEA crashed at Korat in 1965.

Since all but three of these were lost before my first flight as a 130 crew member in 1969, 39 years ago, I know they will be hard to find, but I hope there may be some old pics hidden out there.

Any help would be appreciated.



It will be hard to get photos of the PACAF A-models because regs prohibited taking pictures on the flight lines at any base in PACAF. The guards at Naha, Tachikawa, Kadena, etc. were under strict orders that if they saw a camera, they were to take it and immediately expose the film. This was also true in Vietnam but we would sneak pictures out of the doors or at places where there were no guards watching.

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My personal take on airplanes is that it's the crews, not the airplanes, that are most important. Tail numbers are just that, numbers in a log. .


I agree with you, the crews are the most important, but after 40 years in aviation, I can look back and say that every airplane I either flew on or worked on -- from the C-118 to the DC-10 -- had very distinct personalities of their own. To me, they weren't just numbers in a log. Most of them, I was very fond of and a few I hated with a passion. I think my favorite was 58-0734 because it was the very first C-130 that I ever worked on as a third wiper in 1963. The one I hated the most was S9-NAI (L-100-20) because the flight deck air conditioning never worked nor did any of the fuel gauges.

Just my 2 cents.

Don R.

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