ABILENE, Texas, April 28th, 2011 — Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] and the U.S. Air Force celebrated 50 years of C-130 operations at Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, today.
The baseâ€™s 317th Airlift Group is currently transitioning to the C-130J Super Hercules Ã¢â€â‚¬ the most technologically advanced version of the C-130. The 317th accepted the first of its 28 C-130Js last April, which was delivered by Gen. Norton Schwartz, Chief of Staff of the U.S. Air Force.
â€œAs we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the C-130 at Dyess, we are constantly reminded of the astounding accomplishments achieved by our brave Airmen flying the mighty Hercules to save lives and sustain the conflicts around the globe,â€ said Col. Dan Dagher, 317th Airlift Group commander. â€œAs each generation builds on the successes of our predecessors, we look forward to even greater accomplishments over the next 50 years.â€
Dyess officials first accepted their C-130 A and D models in 1961, and currently fly the H and J models. These C-130s were used to execute a variety of missions, ranging from military operations to humanitarian airlift to unique tasks including support of NASAâ€™s historic Mercury space program. By 2013, Dyess Air Force Base will have the distinction of being home to the largest C-130J fleet when it receives its 28th Super Hercules aircraft.