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

Fritz Wester

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  1. Thanks for posting that link to the MAC Flyer. I have looked around the internet for years trying to find an archive for it. Spent many a winter grave shift on the LRAFB flight line driving MIKE 3 and reading the MAC Flyer when I could catch my breath.
  2. Very impressive troubleshooting. Congrats, well done!
  3. My friend Lt. Col "Bill" Hatfield passed yesterday at the age of 90. Bill was at the forefront of the newly introduced C-130 Hercules at Ardmore and later flew in the "slot" position as Horeseman #4 in the C-130 flight demonstration team "Hercules and the Four Horseman" flying C-130A 56-0473, which is the last surviving four horseman C-130 and is now with the Castle Air Museum. Fly safe my friend. Fritz http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/djournal/obituary-print.aspx?n=lt-col-william-hatfield&pid=188716184
  4. All, please keep Bill Hatfield in your thoughts and prayers. Bill has been in the hospital and in and out of ICU for the past couple of weeks. I spoke with him yesterday and let him know we are pulling for him. Bill was Horseman #4 and flew C-130A 56-0473 (now at Castle Air Museum), in the "slot" position on the demonstration team and in the film "Hercules and the Four Horseman" Bill was "the kid", and at the end of the film hops into a Triumph convertible (or was it an MG?). I think he told me it was the Wing Commanders secretary in the car with him. Ahh the good old days . . .
  5. I am both shocked and saddened by the loss of Bob. He was a friend and a major contributor to not only this site but to the legacy of the C-130. He tirelessly worked to ensure the latest photo's of individual aircraft remained current. I had many conversations with Bob over the years and always enjoyed our discussions immensely. Bob, I will miss you my friend. My prayers and best wishes are with you and your family always.
  6. Great tips! Even after 36 years on the old Herkadactyl I appreciate what I can pick up from "Old Hands". Thanks for the post!
  7. Moffet does have a Son Tay Raider still flying. The aircraft is 66-0212 Call Sign was Lime-01, lead tanker.
  8. Eisenhowers farewell address is as relevant today as when he gave it. The speech was "a solemn moment in a decidedly unsolemn time", warning a nation "giddy with prosperity, infatuated with youth and glamour, and aiming increasingly for the easy life." "As we peer into society's future, we – you and I, and our government – must avoid the impulse to live only for today, plundering for our own ease and convenience the precious resources of tomorrow. We cannot mortgage the material assets of our grandchildren without risking the loss also of their political and spiritual heritage. We want democracy to survive for all generations to come, not to become the insolvent phantom of tomorrow. "But we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense. We have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. Added to this, three and a half million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment. We annually spend on military security alone more than the net income of all United States corporations. Now this conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence—economic, political, even spiritual—is felt in every city, every Statehouse, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet, we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources, and livelihood are all involved. So is the very structure of our society. In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together." Without putting too fine a point on it, Eisenhower was telling us it was up to us as citizens to stay involved in the governmental process. How many of us attend our local caucuses to ensure our direct involvement in the political process. Your political allegiance matters not, being involved in the democratic process is the key to our survival as a nation. Without it, we might just as well hand the whole thing to our enemies, domestic as well as foreign.
  9. How can 1985 H's be going to the bone yard? Hell those airplanes were built 4 years after I joined the Air Force and I started working on 1963 E's. I AM NOT THAT DAMN OLD! Yes you are. As I understand it all the H2's are going to the Boneyard, followed by the H1's. Not only that to keep them from falling into the hands of unscrupulous civilian operators and to help Lockgreed sell J's they are not going into storage but all are going into the scrapping areas. I bet the Boneyard could get a pretty good price for H models with less than 12000 hours on them. Big waste of taxpayer money! To make it more fun all the much higher time E's are in storage, most have new wings!! Bob
  10. Zimmy always spoke very fondly of all the personnel he worked with at "The Grove".
  11. SMsgt Richard Zimmerman of Frackville Pennsylvania passed at the age of 83 on Monday February 27. "Zimmy" was the former Chief Flight Engineer at the 913th at Joint Reserve Base Willow Grove Pennsylvania. Zimmy continued to fly after his AFRES retirement as a 747 FE for Flying Tigers and as a C-130 FE in the aerial firefighting industry for International Air Response for years 1993, 1994 and 1995 in France. Zimmy was born in Ringtown the son of the late Maurice "Hap" and Mabel Hodgert Zimmerman. He was a graduate of Frackville High School, Frackville Pennsylvania. He was a member of the American Legion Post 398, Masonic Lodge 737 and the B.P.O. Elks Lodge 1533 all of Frackville and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. Zimmy started his Air Force career as a B-36 Crew Chief at Carswell and was on board a B-36 aircraft that flew through the Hydrogen Bomb cloud immediately after the H-Bomb test at Bikini Atoll (Operation Castle 1954). He was at Carswell during the filming of "Strategic Air Command" starring Jimmy Stewart, June Allison and Harry Morgan. In a flight line sequence vehicles can be seen driving behind the actors. Zimmy drove one of those vehicles for the movie. He said they would drive one way, turn around and dive the other over and over to make the flight line look like a busy place. Zimmy was also a C-119 Crew Chief who eventually transitioned to Flight Engineer. Zimmy was preceded in death by his first wife Leona Zimmerman and his brother Donald W. "Tex" Zimmerman. He is survived by his second wife Pauline Kopey Searls Zimmerman who resides at their home in Frackville Pennsylvania; Sister Nancy Maglowsky of Frackville daughter Dana Zimmerman Goodman, her husband Robert both of Tampa Florida; a son David Zimmerman, Davids wife Danielle both of Allentown; stepdaughter Lynne Searls Napoli her husband Thomas both of Charlotte North Carolina; stepson Richard Searls and his wife Diane and 8 grandchildren, nieces and nephews. Relatives and friends are invited to a visitation from 2 to 4 P.M. Saturday March 4 at Albert L. Gricoski Funeral Home in Frackville. Internment with Military honors will be in Indiantown Gap National Cemetery, Annville Zimmy was one of two mentors who trained me to be a Flight Engineer. While not intolerant of mistakes, Zimmy did not expect a trainee to make the same mistake twice. His kind understanding and patient teaching method are always with me when I fly. I owe to him a debt of eternal gratitude for his patience, care, understanding and outstanding knowledge of the C-130 and those flight operations. Tailwinds my Dear Friend Fritz
  12. The C-130 on display at the front gate of LRAFB is C-130A 56-0518 and it's history is well documented including its brief stint in the VNAF. 57-0461 is at China Lake, but is not a display aircraft. It is parked just off the aircraft parking ramp of Armitage Field. It was scheduled to be used for weapons testing.
  13. The engines are -9's from an A Model or at least they were two years ago.
  14. 35 continuous non stop uninterrupted years of C-130 maintenance. Its the only damn thing I can do minimally well. I can't decide if I love it or if I'm just terminally stupid
  15. Four years ago and again two years ago I offered C-130A 56-0473 to the NMUSAF at W-P. I gave them a verified providence that the aircraft had been flown by Bill Hatfield as Horseman #4 in Hercules and the Four Horseman. The response was, "what's a Four Horseman" and "why would anyone care?" Even after lobbying by several high profile personnel the museum decided it was just another C-130 and there were hundreds available to choose from anytime they wanted one. Nada, zero interest. So, we donated the airplane to the Castle Air Museum in Atwater/Merced California. The museum is a private foundation, has over 70 aircraft ALL of them outside and they take excellent care of them. Just because you don't have a big fancy hangar is an extraordinarily lame excuse for not taking proper care of your display aircraft. The loss of the surviving Credible Sport aircraft is an unforgivable sin against the history of the USAF. Those who allowed the aircraft to deteriorate have committed heresy and those who have elected to discard it are no better. The comment regarding the Enterprise is spot on. Should we consider it a meaningless piece of junk because it never really flew in space and was cannabalizd for parts? The Credible Sport aircraft is an engineering marvel from a time when there were people at Lockheed and the Air Force who could think and do the unthinkable and undoable and crews who would fly it. The engineers who designed and built the Credible Sport accomplished a feat nearly on par to those who saved Apollo 13. Understand this isn't just about an airplane, or just a C-130. It is about a failure to recognize what was important over what was easy. We will be left to mourn the days when our leadership could have done the right thing but instead elected to make excuses for its failings and instead did what was easy.
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