C-141 FLYING SQUADRONS
This website is about the "Transport and Airlift" squadrons that flew the C-141 during the aircraft's operational years from 1964 – 2006. In addition, it has a directory of crew members that flew the C-141 Starlifter.
FIRST OPERATIONAL C-141 SQUADRON
The 1741st Air Transport Squadron assigned to the 1707th Air Transport Wing (ATW) at Tinker Air Force Base (AFB), Oklahoma was the first squadron to fly the C-141 aircraft (In January 1966 the 1741st was redesignated 57th Military Airlift Squadron).
The first C-141 to arrive at Tinker AFB on 19 October 1964 was tail number 63-8078 and would be known as "Spirit of Oklahoma City".
THE FIRST LINE SQUADRON TO FLY THE C-141
The 44th Air Transport Squadron (ATS), 1501st Air Transport Wing, Travis Air Force Base, California was the first line squadron to fly the C-141. On 23 April 1965, the 44th flew the C-141 (tail number 63-8088 named “Golden Bear”) from the Lockheed factory in GA to Travis Air Force base, CA. The first crew from the 44th to fly the C-141 was as follows: Lt Col Weldon D. Newquist, AC; Lt Col Vere Short, CP; Capt James M. Davis, Nav; CMSgt Daniel M. Lawson, FE; CMSgt William J. Malone, FE; MSgt Thomas P. O’Keefe, LM; TSgt Vernon N. Smith, LM.
THE LAST ACTIVE DUTY SQUADRON TO FLY THE C-141
On Sept. 16 2004, the 6th Airlift Squadron (AS) and the last active duty unit to fly the C-141. The 6th AS flew the last C-141 assigned to the 305th Air Mobility Wing (AMW) at McGuire Air Force Base, serial number 64-0633 to Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, AZ for permanent storage.
THE LAST SQUADRON TO FLY THE C-141
The last squadron to fly the C-141 was the 356th Airlift Squadron a unit of the 445th Airlift Wing at Wright-Patterson AFB, OH. The last flight for the C-141 aircraft was on 6 May, 2006. Fittingly, the last flying C-141, tail number 66-0177, was also the very first American aircraft to land at Gia Lam Airport, Hanoi, North Vietnam February 12, 1973 to pick up prisoners-of-war. Because of that singular honor it was dubbed the “Hanoi Taxi.”
Please visit each squadron and learn about its history and lineage, (family tree).
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