"I asked the doctor how funky can I get, is there a limit to my
( Dan Hicks and the hot licks...)
NAVY HERK NIPS STARLIFTER IN 99 AIRLIFT FACE-OFF
McGUIRE AFB, NJ-A Naval Reserve airlift C-130 Hercules landed here early this morning winning an unprecedented cross-country race with a strategic airlift C-141. The starlifter is expected in late tomorrow following crew rest entered when the aircraft toilet could not be repaired within four hours of scheduled takeoff at Peterson Field, CO.
The race, run between Travis AFB, CA and McGuire AFB, NJ was dubbed the "Mission-Hacker's Marathon" and was filled with planned command-post obstacles throughout the 10-base route. The race required each aircraft to go through the various locations and upload/download cargo and personnel under challenging conditions.
The Starlifter's crew was contacted at Peterson Field just before entering crew rest with the toilet problem. The C-141's aircraft commander stated "We knew it was a critical time for such a malfunction, and it probably cost us the race, but what could we do. . .it just wouldn't flush." "Please congratulate the C-130 crew for us," she added.
The Hercules had been running approximately four bases ahead of the Starlifter throughout the race due to various turns of events. At the very first station, the C-141 crew took off two hours late when fleet service failed to bring creamer for the coffee. Forced to remain overnight at their next stop due to a runway that unfortunately closed following a C-5 landing, the Starlifter crew was thrown even further behind when they refused rooms they considered substandard. "The decor in that hotel was atrocious. I mean, there were green curtains with blue carpet," the aircraft commander fumed, adding that "Pretty soon, they'll expect us to sleep in tents!" The acceptable hotel rooms were 75 miles from the base however, and forced a late takeoff the following day.
At one point in the race it appeared the strategic airlift crew had turned the race around when a protest filed by the crew's parent wing commander, Col Norman Schaule, was accepted by the Navy's Ltjg Jack W. Shelton, Jr. "I thought it unfair that the valid delays we took should penalize us when the Navy C-130 crew was virtually invulnerable to them," explained Col Schaule regarding the protest. "I mean, Navy crews drink yesterday's coffee and don't even care if they sleep in a bed.
They just don't understand the philosophy of modern airlift. You can't compete with that type of mentality," he finished.
Once the protest was
accepted, the C-130 was forced to fly the remainder of the race with the
ramp down, the door open and pulling deployed A22 chutes behind the
aircraft. The C-141 began to make up ground rapidly and actually tied
the Hercules on the seventh stop despite another fleet service delay (no
salad dressing in the box lunches). The telling blow, however, came in
The C-130 aircraft commander, Lt I. M. Parochial, namesake of his granpaw, was interviewed after the flight. "Shucks, I'm just glad I could win this one for granddaddy," the 125 hour aircraft commander said, happily adding, "you know, we were really lucky because the same things that happened to the other crew could have happened to us.
Luckily, however, none of us had any money to buy any coffee or box lunches, 'cause we lost it all in a poker game just before the race. I can really sympathize with their toilet problem too, because our loadmaster forgot to bring the plastic liners for the "honey bucket" and we couldn't even use ours. As for the rooms, we brought our tents with us. Guess you could just say we got lucky on this one."