West Virginia’s 130th Airlift Wing prepares for next generation of C-130 aircraft

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CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – The skies above the Tri-State area were filled with the thrum of aircraft engines Saturday as the West Virginia National Guard’s 130th Airlift Wing made what will most likely be the final training flight of its C-130-H3 aircraft.

Saturday the guard flew a six ship tactical formation across the state and over portions of Ohio.

The flight celebrated the men, women and aircraft which have flown various versions of the C-130 across the world in the Wing’s 46 year history.

The unit is preparing to receive the next generation of the aircraft, the C-130J, after competing against eight other National Guard bases for the upgraded planes. The McLaughlin Air National Guard Base in Charleston is a “preferred location” for the new model and it’s expected the U.S. Air Force with make the decision official in coming months.

The new model will mean fewer flight crew as it no longer requires a flight engineer or navigator. A brief ceremony Saturday honored those crew members.

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