Tue, Apr 21, 2009
They are as iconic a military helo as there can possibly be...
but in the case of the PA National Guard, they are about to join
the ghosts of the past.
The Pennsylvania National Guard will recognize the end of an era
when the two remaining UH-1H Huey helicopters leave Fort Indiantown
Gap's Muir Airfield for Texas on Tuesday, April 21. Senior military
officers, dignitaries and Vietnam veterans will attend this
historic event. The PA Nationa Guard is a huge orgnization. The
commander of the 19,000-member Pennsylvania National Guard is Major
General Jessica L. Wright. She is responsible for a joint military
force – comprised of Air Force and Army units – that
reaches from Joint Headquarters located at Fort Indiantown Gap,
Lebanon County, to some 90 communities across the commonwealth.
Pennsylvania units have taken part in every conflict America has
faced, from the Revolutionary War through Iraqi Freedom, as well as
ongoing peacekeeping missions in Kosovo, Bosnia and elsewhere.
Since September 11, 2001, over 17,000 of their Soldiers and Airmen
have deployed in support of the Global War on Terror.
And to many of them, the Huey was an essential tool.
Produced in 1956, the Huey was the staple aircraft for training
and operations in the Army and the Pennsylvania National Guard for
decades. It was introduced into the Pennsylvania Army National
Guard inventory in 1970. At its peak, some 40 aircraft were
assigned to the commonwealth in the late 1970s.
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