October 29, 2020 (by SrA Max Goldberg) - The 908th Airlift Wing has added the Alabama State University’s logo to the nose of one of its C-130 Hercules October 29, 2020. The artwork was unveiled at a ceremony in a 908th Maintenance Group hangar.
Members of the 908th AW and representatives of Alabama State University pose for a photo in front of the newly unveiled ASU nose art on C-130H #89-1188 from the 357th AS at Maxwell AFB. [USAF photo by SrA Max Goldberg]
The ceremony began with remarks from Lt. Col. Jeffrey Randall, the 357th Airlift Squadron commander.
“Here at the 908th, we have the tradition of naming aircraft and adding symbolism by decorating the front with artwork,” said Randall. “The use of nose art dates back to 1913. Today it appears on one of our aircraft in honor of Alabama State University.”
Now affectionately referred to as “The ASU Plane”, this newly decorated C-130 will bear the school’s logo and represent a partner of the 908th for years to come. Col. Craig W. Drescher, the 908th AW commander, announced the new name and acknowledged its global reach.
“This nose art will be seen all around the world as we execute our tactical airlift mission” said Drescher. “We often refer to the plane by the art on it so you will know from this day forward, all around the world people will know this plane as ‘The ASU Plane.’”
Dr. Quinton T. Ross Jr., president of ASU, addressed the crowd, expressing how meaningful the sentiment of this nose art is to the university.
“Having the hornet logo to adorn the nose of one of the 908th’s celebrated C-130 Hercules aircraft is indeed an honor,” said Ross. “It will be cherished as part of ASU history and seals the partnership between ASU and the 908th.”
While the nose art on “The ASU Plane” signifies the relationship between the university and the 908th AW, there is a deeper more personal meaning to this particular logo. In July, Senior Airman Jarvise Gibson, a maintainer with the 908th Maintenance Squadron and ASU alumnus, passed away. The logo will also act as a memorial to the 908th Airman.
“(Gibson) was one of the many wing members that kept our aircraft flying,” said Drescher. “His wingmen have decided to remember him in this special way and we hope in the near future to see this plane fly over a special event on the ASU campus.”
“The ASU Plane” will join the three other 908th aircraft bearing the logos of local universities and will serve to further represent the partnership between the 908th and the community it serves.