Jump to content
Aero Precision provides OEM part support for military aircraft operators across more than 20 aircraft

trash haulers


herky130fe
 Share

Recommended Posts

Just started reading the book and I am amazed how TAC seemed to have no regard for its people in those early days of the 50' and 60's. People and machines were moved around without any regard it seems to the well being of the folks. Coming from a pretty stable SAC in 1966 I found that PACAF and later TAc itself still seemed to have no regard for the airmen even until I retired in 75. Being assigned to troop carrier in the 50's and 60's had to be hell.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was in it in the 60's. I know it seemed like we flew to hell a few times. I never really noticed the change when we went from TCS to TAS. Patches were different, not much else. A few on here that were in TCS more than TAC and could probably comment. TCS/TAC missions were varied so moving around was part of the package. I remember a lot of the older pilots discussed the "differences" between MATS/MAC and TCS/TAC a lot and usually they didn't say good things about their time in MAC.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just started reading the book and I am amazed how TAC seemed to have no regard for its people in those early days of the 50' and 60's. People and machines were moved around without any regard it seems to the well being of the folks. Coming from a pretty stable SAC in 1966 I found that PACAF and later TAc itself still seemed to have no regard for the airmen even until I retired in 75. Being assigned to troop carrier in the 50's and 60's had to be hell.

I don't know if it was hell, not having served anywhere but TAC or PACAF, I have nothing to compare. However, after several decades of "looking back", researching old records, a lot of reading, listening to "war stories", etc. it would seem that TAC and PACAF made a habit, at least in the early and mid 1960s (Vietnam War) of moving man and machine in an almost, it seems now, reckless manner. That is one of the things that we had to contend with in C-130 maintainance was the constant movement: never having parts, no place to stay (I had never heard of Herky Hill 'til a couple years ago), sometimes wouldn't see pay or mail for a month or two. I have to give credit to the US Army and the USMC. Those guys were really good at lending a hand when needed. More than once Airman Plantz or myself would have borrow a jeep , pickup truck, nuts bolts, rope, who knows what and the ground pounders always helped out.

I should add here that the Commanders back at CCK or earlier at MacTan were aware of the miserable conditions and eventually things improved, at least that's what I've been told!!!!! Another post script: in the 1965-1966 time frame we Herky healers had never seen or heard of such a thing as a unit patch or the like. Our "Espre de Corp" came from keeping planes in the air, and on occasion begging beer from the Aussies!!!!!!!

tinwhistle

Edited by tinwhistle
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I got on the TAC C-130's in 1963 at Sewart AFB Tn. I thought it was normal when we landed that the flt. crew dissappeared and left me the crew chief, working on the acft. Hey, that was my job! Back then you were on your own when you finished. Slept on the acft. many times. TCS and TAS made no difference to the CC. When MAC took over the 130's, maint. wise it was a much better deal. It was more like an airline Air Force than in TAC where it was like an Army Air Force. I'm sure many of the folks on this board might think right the opposite. Still loved it though!!! :) Bill

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was on my second 90 day rote from Langley to Clark back in 1964 when we were told to go home and pack because the whole wing (463rd TCW) was moving PCS to the Philippines in a very short time. It wasn't difficult for me -- I was a single 2-striper, but I remember some of the married guys with families had a hard time. My crew chief, Tsgt Stanley Craft decided to hang up his almost 20 years rather than leave his family at Buckroe Beach. He was going to Mactan which was an unaccompanied tour. Of course, the Vietnam war was building at a furious pace then and regard for personel and their families were secondary.

As Bill above said -- "Still loved it though!!!"

Don R.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

i think most of us loved what we done and would do it again if we were able. My mind is strong but my body is getting weaker. The worst week-end was at Tripoli,Libya, Landed and refueled and checked the plane out went to the hotel next morning pre-flight all was well start engines taxi out run up and low pressure #2 boost pump, at some places we would have left but not here three days on that hot a## flight line with a one strip fuel cell man we worked our A## off but got the job done it was a task.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I did about seven years as a C-130 crew chief. My cross country experience with aircrews was mixed. On most trips the crew treated me well. One instance ron at Lajes I ended up in the hospital. The next morning the AC came to see me. I asked him not to depart without me....he didn't. A day later I was ok and we took off for Langley. On another ron as I was securing the acft. I looked up and saw the crew bus still setting in front of the acft. I walked to the bus to see what was going on. The AC told me they were waiting for me. Laughingly I told him it was going to be several hours before I was done. Other times it seemed the props were still coasting down as the crew bus was pulling away. No fuel load, departure time, nothing. On another trip the AC treated me so poorly the FE later apologized. On occasion when recovery stretched into the wee hours I would bum a shower at the fire station and sleep on the acft, sometimes running the GTC the remainder of the night. All in all I took the good with the bad, just part of the job.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One of the good aspects of being left with the aircraft and being on your own as a crew chief was staying out of trouble. One trip to Istanbul the crew blew it out the night before we left and in the morning didn't have enough money to pay their hotel bill. I ended up pooling all I had with them to get the bills paid. When we lifted off I don't think we four dollars on the plane. I did get paid back.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I got on the TAC C-130's in 1963 at Sewart AFB Tn. I thought it was normal when we landed that the flt. crew dissappeared and left me the crew chief, working on the acft. Hey, that was my job! Back then you were on your own when you finished. Slept on the acft. many times. TCS and TAS made no difference to the CC. When MAC took over the 130's, maint. wise it was a much better deal. It was more like an airline Air Force than in TAC where it was like an Army Air Force. I'm sure many of the folks on this board might think right the opposite. Still loved it though!!! :) Bill

I started out on MATS (and MAC) C-130's at McGuire and the crews were the absolute worst except for the Navy crews from Lakehurst. Then I went to Naha under TCS (TAS) and like you Bill, most (not all) of the time the crew left me as soon as the engines stopped. I too thought it was my job to get the plane OR and thought nothing of it. I also slept on the plane, mostly because I wanted to make sure there were no midnigt requisitions going on (except by me). I know there are some who will say they never had a crew chief on their missions, but I always flew with my plane (except when my asistant had taken her off the Rock) where ever she went in Nam and also flew on the Blindbat missions as a flare kicker. I loved what I did. Sonny

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I always tried to make sure the crew chief was taken care of because you could never trust the pilot to do it.

Dan,

There were a few Flt. Mech.s and Loadies who took care of us crew chiefs and I appreciated it very much. Always did what I could to help them out when needed.

Sonny

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The Fe, Lm and me as CC usually worked as a team wneh on a mission.

We helped each other till the plane was OR after we landed.

I went to Bangkok about Aug 66 and worked on all C-130,s that came through till I got out in Nov. 66.

I think they called it CALSU or something like that. We had a real good time there. 12 hours on and 24 hours off.

I was supposed to stay longer but they sent my replacement and told me to get back to Naha cause I had 10 days to process out.

Someone was keeping track of how long I was where.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

I was on my second 90 day rote from Langley to Clark back in 1964 when we were told to go home and pack because the whole wing (463rd TCW) was moving PCS to the Philippines in a very short time. It wasn't difficult for me -- I was a single 2-striper, but I remember some of the married guys with families had a hard time. My crew chief, Tsgt Stanley Craft decided to hang up his almost 20 years rather than leave his family at Buckroe Beach. He was going to Mactan which was an unaccompanied tour. Of course, the Vietnam war was building at a furious pace then and regard for personel and their families were secondary.

As Bill above said -- "Still loved it though!!!"

Don R.

Did you ever know a guy stationed at Langley named Charles McAfee? I went to Tech school with him. He got assigned to 463rd andI went to the 464th. If you have any info I'd be very grateful. I have tried to located him for many years. Last time I saw him both of us were at Clark Field. His A/C had been damaged and they were repaingit there. I was in Mactan Nov 65 - Feb 66 with 778th TCS. Thanks for any info. Fellow Trash Hauler Crew Chief.

Gus

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with what everyone had to say. Vietnam was a meat grinder for C-130 maintenance personal. What would you expect when all valuable cargo moved by air. Think about it, with out the C-130 in Vietnam, the war would have had a much different out come. Only the coastal bases received cargo transported by other means. I came to Vietnam weighing about 190 and left weighing 150 and spent 30 days in the 8th Army Hospital.

Having started my military career in the Air Force and finishing it in Army Aviation (combat). At least the Army issued its maintenance people weapons and you were expected to carry that weapon at all times. You have means to defend yourself. With most of the pilots in the Army being WOs, you don't have the mind set, they are better than you (the crew chief) as you have in the Air Force. In Army Aviation the crew chief is a very respected position on any flight crew. No crew chief and chances are that aircraft will not be flown. That doesn't apply to gun ships. As the book says, we were young once.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...