May 28, 2020 (by SSgt. Dana J. Cable) - A brand new C-130J Super Hercules (#17-5897) was delivered to Little Rock Air Force Base May 27, marking the last C-130J delivery for the 19th Airlift Wing and Air Mobility Command.
USAF C-130J-30 #17-5897 prepares to takeoff from the Lockheed Martin facility in Marietta, Georgia, May 27, 2020. The historic aircraft delivery to LRAFB serves as the final C-130J for the 19th Airlift Wing and Air Mobility Command. [Courtesy photo]
With the historic aircraft delivery, which is the final C-130J to arrive from the Lockheed Martin facility in Marietta, Georgia, LRAFB continues to be the largest C-130J operator in the world —Home of Herk Nation.
LRAFB now boasts a C-130J fleet of 47 aircraft between both the 19th Airlift Wing and 314th Airlift Wing.
The 19th Airlift Wing began transitioning from older C-130H cargo aircraft to newer C-130J models in 2004. The airframe conversion enables Airmen to improve strategic and tactical airlift capabilities.
“It’s an honor to be part of the team of Airmen that welcomed the final C-130J to the Home of Herk Nation,” said Col. John Schutte, 19th Airlift Wing commander. “This latest addition to the world’s largest C-130J fleet will be put to immediate use as we continue to project and sustain agile combat airlift, globally.”
The J-model airframe offers a longer fuselage with additional pallet positions for added airlift capacity, an updated cockpit with digital avionics, more efficient engines and propellers, which increase range and speed and many other improvements.
The C-130J enables LRAFB to quickly provide humanitarian airlift relief to disaster victims and airdrop supplies and troops into the heart of contingency operations in hostile areas of Central Asia, South America and the Horn of Africa.