blytheville air force base photos

326th Base Headquarters and Air Base Squadron; 21 July 1942-30 April 1944 2111th Army Air Forces Base Unit; 1 May 1944-16 June 1945 Became Blytheville Air Force Base / Eaker Air Force Base (1951-1992) Now: Arkansas International Airport (IATA: BYH, ICAO: KBYH, FAA LID: BYH) (1992-Present) Newport Army Air Field, 6 miles northeast of Newport [1], In 1988, the U.S. Air Force officially renamed Blytheville AFB to Eaker AFB in commemoration of World War II General Ira Eaker, the former commander of the 8th Air Force. My last 8 months of service I was the NCOIC of the Repair Cycle Unit "DIFM Control", KC-135A - 61-0267 - 97th BW, Blytheville Air Force Base, N503DN Delta Air Lines | Airbus A350-941 | Arkansas International Airport. Photo Credit: The National Cold War Center. The walls are riddled with holes. Some commanders, such as General Charles Donnelly in USAFE (no relation to the author) reportedly considered making names and/or nose art on USAFE aircraft a requirement. The Hound Dog was withdrawn in the 1970s and replaced with the AGM-69 SRAM, which could be carried in groups of 20 rather than just two of the huge Hound Dogs. If the alert force had not received that second "stand down" code, they would have taken off; and (as we saw it, back then) if that happened, very soon, we would have been in the midst of a nuclear war. Movie Theater. Opened in late 2020, the BAFB Exhibition features memorabilia, video and personal stories of the base from its 1942 beginnings until closure in 1992. Marker is at the intersection of Memorial Drive and Chestnut Drive, on the right when traveling east on Memorial Drive. About ten years ago a group of old 97 OMS troops made a trip to see the old place. The aircraft in question was tail number 61-0023. By August 1973, they had flown 126,615 combat sorties with seventeen B-52s lost to enemy action. Blytheville Air Force Base, Blytheville . It launched rescue missions from the base to Grenada in 1983 and in August 1990, the pilots of the 97th Bomber Wing began practicing for missions in the Middle East and eventually supported Operation Desert Storm. As the Cold War ended, "Valkyrie" was assigned to her last duty station with the 2nd BW at Barksdale AFB, Louisiana, but she would have one last mission. Thank you! Washington, DCMay 26, 2020.Today, Congressman Steve Womack (AR-3) joined Congressman Rick Crawford (AR-1), Congressman French Hill (AR-2), and Congressman Bruce Westerman (AR-4) in announcing the introduction of legislation to name the Blytheville/Eaker Air Force Base located in Blytheville, Arkansas the "National Cold War Center." The air force base was established in 1942 as a . Arkansas had six Army airfields. Contributions to PAs Most Endangered List, National Register of Historic Places (Jan, 26th 2018). The last model 61-0040, was produced in 1962. Eleven of these jets were flown from 1969 to Feb 1974 when they were retired due to the oil crisis. The exhibit is on the old air base, which is now an FBO for the new steel and other corporations that fly in there, along with other airplane related functions. Fill out the form and sign up to help us protect: By signing up, you are not committing to anything, you are simply subscribing to be notified of upcoming volunteer dates. Its' soft start" with hours on Friday's and Saturday from about 12:00pm to 4:00pm, will take some trip planning. The facility now operates as the Arkansas Aeroplex and Arkansas International Airport. At 14 I was hopping buses and trains and hanging out with friends in surrounding towns. Blytheville was the only Advanced training base in Arkansas. if I remember correctly it was one of the rooms pictured (162). They also tended, in some cases, to be far more raunchy than even World War II or Korean nose art even dared--one popular one was to show a heavily pregnant Lucy Van Pelt from "Peanuts" screaming "Damn you, Charlie Brown!" The Air Force packed up and left. As the 97th Bomb Group it's B-17 were the first to drop bombs on the Germans in France in 1942. Thule is the only air force base with no aircraft and a tugboat. The 97th deployed to Edwards AFB, California, while operating this aircraft. . The Air Force needed a long-distance bomber that could travel all the way to the former U.S.S.R., drop a payload on a target and travel back without needing refueling. Abandoned Arkansas had noticed while touring the base, the former base bank had been torn down the week prior to January 1st, 2022. A B52 with a full nuclear payload, is the seventh most powerful country in the world.. The B-52 has set numerous records in its many years of service. Microscopy, Atomic Force Pulmonary Ventilation Acoustic Impedance Tests. On the opening night of the war, a group of B-52s took off from Barksdale AFB, Louisiana and struck targets in Iraq with ALCMs, in a 34-hour nonstop round trip mission, a record that stood until 1996. It was renamed Eaker Air Force Base in 1988, in honor of General Ira Eaker, an aviation pioneer and second . Hill Aerospace Museum officially received the aircraft for static display on July 11, 1991. Granted today, the area has stayed well populated due to industrial jobs, but Blythevilles unemployment rate is four percent higher than the national average (pre-covid). The aircraft was flown from Castle AFB to Hill AFB, Utah, in its final flight. KC-135A - 61-0267 - 97th BW, Blytheville Air Force Base by Darren Currie 19 International Air Tattoo 1987 - RAF Fairford. Eaker Air Force Base is located approximately 3 miles northwest of Blytheville, Arkansas, on Interstate 55 between St Louis and Memphis. CENTCOM commander H. Norman Schwartzkopf demanded continual B-52 strikes-- eventually forty percent of all ordnance expended--and the results were devastating. I completed USAF Technical School in Denver Co the end of June 1972 and received two weeks leave before reporting to my base and when I arrived home my old farm boss, USAAF Veteran Bill Morriss had a brand new Suzuki motorcycle in his garage. The aircraft remained there until November when it was reassigned to the 320th Bombardment Wing (H) at Mather AFB, California. 2, no. The KC135 Stratotanker, as most other notary aircraft, was born out of necessity. It was rolled out of Boeings Wichita plant. Select from premium Blytheville Air Force Base of the highest quality. FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEContact: Sara Robertson (Sara.Robertson2@mail.house.gov) Arkansas Delegation Introduces Legislation to Designate Blytheville Air Force Base as National Cold War Center 2/7/2023 Washington - Today, Representatives Crawford, Hill, Westerman, and Womack, along with Senators Boozman and Cotton, introduced legislation to name the Blytheville/Eaker Air Force Base located in . It is planned to be its own exhibit within the system of buildings. Capt R.D. Beechcraft AT-10, and Curtiss-Wright AT-9s. Evans was from Osceola AR. In 1990, Blythevilles population was 23,443. Eaker Air Force Base was originally named Blytheville Army Airfield when it was built in 1942. The base closed in 1992, and unfortunately most of the residential units north of Daisy Drive are vacant and have since . This view also shows how well 58-0183 is preserved, and the EVS bulges beneath the B-52's nose. My job was to keep the alert aircraft supplied with the parts they needed to be mission ready. Streamline your workflow with our best-in-class digital asset management system. On 7 July 1971 SACs last C-47 was transferred to the USS Alabama Monument Commission. Airplane Photos & Aviation Photos - View, Search, or Upload Photos! Places to visit . 1950's. Janet Austin - Duplessis. In 1945 the U. S. Army Air Field was deactivated and the cemetery reverted to the City of Blytheville Arkansas. Honorable Discharged at the rank of E5 Staff Sgt. As I recall, crew members were typically on alert for 10 days of every month. Blytheville was the only two engine training base in Arkansas. Owners of said buildings had big ambitions to renovate and repurpose the old buildings, but either plans never took off or money was tight. After a brief hiatus of less than a decade, the facility reopened as the Blytheville Air Force Base. Its' soft start" with hours on Friday's and Saturday from about 12:00pm to 4:00pm, will take some trip planning. This would determine if the base could go on operating in the future, or if it was deemed unnecessary to continue service. The aircraft was set on course to Boeings headquarters in Wichita, Kansas. NUMBER BUILT: Douglas built a total of 10,047 C-47s and derivatives. (For some reason, this "Hotshot" never got eyes.). BLYTHEVILLE AIR FORCE BASE EXHIBITION. Unbeknownst to the crew, over seventy percent of the vertical stabilizer and rudder assembly had been sheared off. (Some joked that the ladies might just paint hunky guys on their aircraft!). Watch. This is a photoshopped 1972 Suzuki Brochure that I have transposed my face over the riders face. Any monthly plan. During WWII, my Dad and his best friend, John Whittington, would go to the base (teenagers) and work. Far in the northeast corner of Arkansas, five miles west of the Mississippi River, the city of Blytheville remembers a prosperous past while hoping for a bright future. Eaker Air Force Base was complete with swimming pools, tennis courts, a grocery store, a dental office, a nine hole golf course, a theater, multiple clubs, visitation centers, a gym, and on-base housing for military families. The airplane dismantler used most of the tarmac we were using and we havent been back since before covid. The airbase was phased out years ago, but Blytheville has emerged as a steel production center and agri-business is strong. "Hoosier Hotshot" was originally applied to a B-17G Flying Fortress of the 91st Bomb Group during World War II, but when SAC began applying nose art to their B-52s, a 97th Bomb Wing B-52G crew reproduced the nose art on 57-6486 as a tribute to the original. It is aRead more . In its prime, it housed over 3,000 service members, and a whole fleet of Strategic Air Command B52 BUFF Stratofortresses. Charles Fisher would forever be known as Mr. New in 1960. In 2020, both Arkansas senators proposed a bill to designate the museum in Blytheville. Roof repairs began on February 19, 2022. Touch device users, explore by touch or with swipe . During the second World War, the United States needed more areas to train pilots, and launch aircraft to respond to the threat on the Eastern front. Some were torn down. Whether it be by the hand of the elements, or by deconstruction due to safety issues. Photo by Democrat-Gazette file photo . Building 1225 is currently registered on the National Register Of Historic Places and is quoted as being the crown jewel of the National Cold War Center campus. Though Phase Two of the project is underway (as of February 2022), there have been no announcements of when the museum will officially open. In June 1975 the aircraft was sent to the 97th Bombardment Wing (H) residing at Blytheville AFB, Arkansas. I never earned Air Force Wings, the wings that appear in the photo are those of the Commemorative Air Force of which I am a member. Almost immediately, this was proven to be a vain hope: the only aircraft able to replace the B-52 was, it seemed, another B-52. During World War II, the site served as a training airfield as part of the 70,000 Pilot Training Program. Was the first KC-135E conversion in 1982. Over 1,000,000 pictures On January 11th, during Agile Combat Employment training exercises performed by the U.S. Air Force at Eaker Air Force Base, work had begun on the restoration process of Building 1225. Serial Number 61-0023 landed safely in Blytheville. 732 of the aircraft were specifically aerial tankers. . The B-52 is one of the few planes I remember Dad talking about during his career at Hill Air Force Base. [1], On 15 July 1955, the facility was reopened as Blytheville Air Force Base (AFB), when the 461st Bombardment Wing was moved from Hill Air Force Base in Utah. Learn how your comment data is processed. Many DC-3 and C-47s are still in operation, nearing the end of their first half century of service and looking like they could go another half century. Extensive efforts to offset the negative economic effects on the community of Blytheville were undertaken by local and federal officials, who cleaned up the site and then distributed the land to various organizations, including the Department of the Interior (DOI), the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). From an extreme case of having to be boarded up like a top secret quarantine, to simply being an old tool shed that never got used. The B-52 Stratofortress force had always been intended to be supplemented by newer designs, allowing older types and eventually the B-52 itself to be retired. What aRead more , Stationed there 1989-1992, loved the place and love the life long friends from there. As "Hoosier Hotshot," it flew first with the 97th BW at Blytheville AFB, Arkansas, then finished its career with the 93rd BW at Castle AFB, California. https://military-history.fandom.com/wiki/Eaker_Air_Force_Base, https://www.boeing.com/history/products/b-52-stratofortress.page, https://www.boeing.com/history/products/kc-135-stratotanker.page, https://www.congress.gov/bill/117th-congress/senate-bill/1771/text?r=1&s=1, https://www.boozman.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/2020/12/bill-designating-national-cold-war-center-in-blytheville-introduced-in-senate, https://www.af.mil/About-Us/Biographies/Display/Article/107172/general-ira-c-eaker/, https://www.afcec.af.mil/Home/BRAC/Eaker.aspx, https://www.npr.org/2010/03/09/123773525/female-wwii-pilots-the-original-fly-girls. Under the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 the United States government is obligated to consider utilization, procurement and disposal of government property. Three crewmen died in the crash. My other picture of "Valkyrie" was taken from the right side, but the other day I realized I had never posted the picture of the aircraft's nose art. Weekly Began in 1902; ceased in 1923. It was one of many air fields created in the country's interior during the war for this purpose. Blytheville herald-news Blytheville courier news (DLC)sn 89051348 In December 1972, after being repaired, it flew four additional missions over North Vietnam. View allAll Photos Tagged Blytheville Air Force Base. The model is on a 1/72 scale with a 26" wingspan. On January 31st, 2022, the Arkansas Aeroplex officially announced that work had been started on restoring Building 1225. The United States no longer needed bombers and fuel-tankers to be on 24/7 alert. At one point, sharkmouths were banned by 7th Air Force in Saigon as being "too warlike"--despite, of course, the "non-warlike" aircraft carrying tons of bombs and missiles. Blytheville Air Force Base was established in 1942 as a pilot training station. This is the alert facility, or "mole hole," where bomber and tanker aircraft crew in the Strategic Air Command (SAC; USAF) lived while they were pulling alert duty during the Cold War. 3 items. Nose Art: Boeing B-52G Stratofortress "Hoosier Hotshot", Nose Art: Boeing B-52G Stratofortress "Valkyrie", N915DN Delta Air Lines | McDonnell Douglas MD-90-30 | Arkansas International Airport, N502DN Delta Air Lines | Airbus A350-941 | Arkansas International Airport, 59-1514 Boeing KC-135E Stratotanker United States Air Force, N907DL Delta Air Lines | McDonnell Douglas MD-88 | Arkansas International Airport, www.hill.af.mil/library/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=5714, www.youtube.com/watch?v=leohcvmf8kM&feature=related, B-52G with an North American AGM-28 Hound Dog Missile, National Museum of the United States Air Force, Dayton, Ohio, Photoshopped image of Rick OKelley Age 20 on his 1972 Suzuki GT750J Le Mans, Post Card KC 135 refueling a B-52G from Blytheville AFB, Sign that set at the Main Gate at Blytheville Air Force Base, 1977477_10202915854723496_3494507586333601988_n, www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/facility/bomber_alert.htm, Blytheville Air Force Base exhibit at DGM, Rickie D O'Kelley Staff Sergeant 1975 - Age 22. Hear those stories come to life from the soldiers who served at the BAFB Exhibition. It seemed like every morning at 5:00 AM the flight line maintenance crews would fire up some of the airplanes engines. Find Blytheville Air Force Base stock photos and editorial news pictures from Getty Images. Transferred from the 97th Bomb Wing, Blytheville Air Force Base, Ark., this aircraft was flown to the museum in November 1978. The Cold War had come to and end. Armament: Four .50-cal. Buy None was a no notice operational exercise conducted in 1989. "A B52 with a full nuclear payload, is the seventh most powerful country in the world.". A strong gust of wind has pushed the rear of the aircraft left then right. An exploration of the base's history and its impact on the community. Airmen from the 97th Bombardment Wing lost their lives and their photos appear on the lonely memorial at their abandoned base in Blytheville; Lt Col Keith R Heggen was in "Olive1", (now buried at Arlington Nat'l Cemetery) Lt Col Donald L Rissi, 1st LT Robert J Thomas and Msgt Walter L Ferguson were in "Charcoal 1" Major Bobby A Kirby, Capt Randall J Craddock, Capt George B Lockhart, Capt Ronald D Perry and 1st Lt Charles E Darr were in "Tan 3". For nearly 50 years, residents of Blytheville, Ark., proudly supported the Air Force base in their town. NCO Club. Posted to Facebook by William Travis. The worst building on base is the hospital. This VC-47D had been assigned to the 97th Bomb Wing, Blytheville Air Force Base, Arkansas. In 1988, the facility was renamed Eaker Air Force Base in honor of World War II General of the Eighth Air Force, Ira C. Eaker. Timeline photos. It was located 3 miles (5 km) northwest of central Blytheville, Arkansas. Armament: Four defensive .50-cal. In 1988, the based was renamed to honor World War II General, Ira C. Eaker. PIGGOTT, Ark., July 30 (UPI) An Air Force C130 transport plane crashed, and burned at dusk today in a pasture in this town in northeastern Arkansas, killing all six persons aboard. The USAF Thunderbirds flew the F-4E Phantom II from 1969 until Feb 1974 when they were retired due to the October 1973 fuel crisis. Only ten B-52Gs survive today as museum pieces. By that time, the B-52G had already been tested in combat, with mixed results. My Heritage. Eaker Air Force Base (1942-1992) was a front-line United States Air Force base for over 40 years. This B-52G-100-BW (S/N 58-0191), nicknamed "Bearin' Arms," was manufactured by Boeing Aircraft Corporation in Wichita, Kansas, and delivered to the USAF on October 16, 1959. Explore. Gym - Center of Wing's Athletic Activities. With the end of the war the base was closed, only to be reopened 15 July 1955 as a Strategic Air Command (SAC) base which was home to B-57 and B-52 . Photo by Democrat-Gazette file photo . machine guns in tail plus up to 43,000 lbs. It was amazing. The Getty Images design is a trademark of Getty Images. These jets were flown from 1969 to Feb 1974 when they were retired due to the oil crisis. By August 1973, they had flown 126,615 combat sorties with 17 B-52s lost to enemy action. I'm fairly certain I saw this aircraft at an airshow at Malmstrom AFB in the 1980s, as the nose art is familiar, but it may be wishful thinking on my part. The hospital has been tightly sealed up. My first year I worked in Procurement which is to the far right edge in this photo, it is the last building on the left along Memorial Drive, the wide street going left to right. While the B-52Hs remained on nuclear alert standby, the G models were used in the conventional bombing role after the first few nights of cruise missile strikes; at first, this was done at low altitude, but switched to high altitude later onnot because of the threat of Iraqi air defenses, which had been badly degraded, but of the psychological effect. Boards are the best place to save images and video clips. It is a peculiarly shaped building, like the rest of the buildings on the base. In June 1972 General Brown assumed command of the 416th Bombardment Wing at Griffiss Air Force Base, N.Y. The first DC-3s were ordered by the USAAF in 1941 under the designation C-47, but there was no way to predict that simple designation would become a legend, that over 10,000 would be built and that the plane would be listed by General Dwight Eisenhower as one of the four pieces of equipment most vital to our success in Africa and Europe. There were countless modifications to the C-47 fleet, some taking place at the factory and some in the field. In the politically correct 2000s, nose art has been hidden in wheel-well doors or, in the case of the A-10, behind the integral ladder door, and often as not, simply does not exist. The heavier steel fuel tanks of the tall-tail series were replaced by integral fuel tanks, in which the entire wing served as a tank. machine guns in tail plus up to 43,000+ lbs. [3] Six more men from the 97th were also lost in Vietnam, whose names are recognized on a memorial placard at the former base. Airman First Class Monex Thomas of the Blytheville Air Force Base died in an aircraft training incident on August 1 1982. This has been an ongoing project for over a year. Today it is 14,011. "Valkyrie" would fly a few more missions during the war, the only time she would drop bombs in anger. The B52 Stratofortress had solved every issue the Air Force ran into with earlier bombers. BLYTHEVILLE ARMY AIRFIELD 1942. Who knew that 41 years later I would have a new Mustang or even still be alive. And this is a photo of the HULK 46 design that the . The Ritz Theater from the outside circa. On January 10th, 1964, a B52H loaned to Boeing by the USAF was testing the structural integrity of, and new technology for the aircraft. The 17th Bombardment Wing (H) at Anderson AB was this aircraft's next duty station, arriving there in January 1973. This one is at the old (now closed) SAC base near Blytheville, Arkansas. Alas LRAFB was where we flew C119s to summer camp, but always hoped foe a fly in there. The first of 12 model aircrafts that were once housed at the Blytheville Air Force Base (later Eaker Air Force Base) was delivered on Wednesday to the exhibition building. On June 10, 1942, the U.S. Army opened an advanced pilot training school at Blytheville, Arkansas. A taxi way to the southern end of the apron joins the Blytheville Air Force Base Alert area to the main runway, which allows bombers and tankers with the quickest access to that . Operated by the 97th Bombardment Wing based at Eaker AFB, Blytheville AR. In August 1991 this Stratofortress was dropped from the Air Force inventory and made available to the USAF Museum Program. Eaker. machine guns in tail plus up to 60,000+ lbs. I had only three duty assignments, I began my service at Blytheville right out of Tech School as the Supply Representative to Base Procurement, then most of my time I was a "NORS Controller" responsible for keeping the Alert Aircraft and Nuclear Missiles supplied with parts. Tom Sylvester used to look up at the sky above Blytheville in the 1970s, watch the planes fly out of the nearby Air Force base and dream about being able to glide among the clouds. Blytheville, Walnut Ridge, Grider, Newport, Stuttgart, and Adams Field. U.S. There were trainer versions designated TC-47 and reconnaissance versions designated RC-47. Known as Operation Secret Squirrel, this 34-hour mission was at the time the longest aerial mission ever flown, and was not surpassed until the strikes on Afghanistan in 2001. by Ryan Nix, Photos by Jamison Mosley. Today. The airfield was used as the Southeastern Training Command's flight training school, which closed in October 1945 after the Second World War ended. Located on the former Eaker Air Force Base (also known as Blytheville Air Force Base), a few blocks inside the west gate. This area was developed pursuant to guidelines established by the Federal Housing Administration , and is laid out with . However, the B-58 was delayed, and in accordance with General Curtis LeMays prescient worries that the B-52 force would simply fall apart, Boeing began development of a new variant of the B-52, the B-52G. This gallery is to showcase old photographs from Blytheville, Arkansas. The base's primary mission shifted to bomber training. (USAF Museum Official Website), Objects and images related to Blytheville Air Force Base, aka Eaker Air Force Base, The patch for the 340th Bomb Squadron assigned to the 97th Bomb Wing, Blytheville Air Force Base aka Eakers Air Force Base. Blytheville AFB was created in 1942 as a location for pilot training, originally named Blytheville Army Airfield. The group was awarded two Distinguish Unit Citations during WWII and the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award in 1962 during the Cuban Missile Crises. TWS is the largest online community of Veterans existing today and is a powerful Veteran locator. Profile pictures. Since 1955, the B52 Stratofortress has been Americas go-to long-distance strategic bomber.

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