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End of an Era


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More than 40 years ago the Air Force created Rapid Area Maintenance (RAMS) teams to do depot level maintenance and modifications in the field. After it became too dangerous for civilain contractor teams in Vietnam the Air Force restructured the teams with blue suiters and created the Combat Logistics Support Squadrons (CLSS). In December 1967 the Air Force activated the 2955th CLSS to support Robins ALC. The 2955th were known for projects like PACER JOIN, recovery of the C-141 from Iwakuni, Japan and its noteworty accomplishments in DESERT STORM. In 1992 the Air Force renamed the 2955th to the 653rd CLSS and continued supporting the warfigter. If you look at the 653rd CLSS patch you notice 5 stars across the top. They were left in recognition of the 2955th and its honorable history. The 653rd became known for repairing crash damaged aircraft, crash recovery, depot level maintenance and repair in the field. Projects like recovery of the C-5 in Baghdad, the recovery of the LC-130 in Antarctica, crash damage repair and recovery of several F-15, C-130, C-17, and helicopters around the world along with many others supporting the DoD, FMS, and Air Force. PBD (Program Budget Decision) 720 brought the squadron's end as well as the other CLSSs at Tinker and Hill AFB as the Air Force restructured to support the warfighter. Thursday at 11am the 653rd CLSS was deactivated bringing an end to an ERA that supported the warfighter worldwide "With a touch of CLaSS". The remaining 56 members of the 653rd CLSS were absorbed into the 402 AMXS as the Expeditionary Depot Maintenance Flight. These men and women will continue to support the ALC and warfighters anytime, anyplace; keeping the spirit of the 653 CLSS alive. "CLSS!"

MSgt Donald "Sonny" Johnston (ret)

653 CLSS Alumni 1996 - 2006

Edited by SonnyJ
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