5k In Combat Talons

Posted 27 September 2010
Photo by SrA Sheila deVera

Lt. Col. Robert Starnes, a navigator with the 15th Special Operations Squadron at Hurlburt Field, Florida, passed the 5,000 flight hour mark on the MC-130H Combat Talon II special operations transport during a training mission on 27 September 2010. This is believed to be the all-time record for flight hours on a Talon II. Starnes noted he set his sights on breaking the record ten years ago. His most memorable flights came during the Tsunami relief effort in Thailand and Banda Aceh, Indonesia in 2004, when crews were flying sixteen- to eighteen hours each day. After a twenty-three year career, Starnes will retire in December. Starnes, right, is shown with Lt. Col. Patrick Wolfe, the 15th SOS commander.


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