This landmark Hercules is an HC-130J Combat King II personnel recovery aircraft assigned to the U.S. Air Force’s 71st Rescue Squadron, which is part of the 347th Rescue Group.
A U.S. Air Force crew ferried the HC-130J to its new home at Moody Air Force Base in Valdosta, Georgia.
“This milestone delivery is a source of pride for our team and the global C-130 community,” said George Shultz, vice president and general manager, C-130 Programs at Lockheed Martin. “The Hercules is a global asset and versatile workhorse that is truly without equal. This delivery represents the C-130’s strength in numbers and its ongoing relevancy to operators around the world.”
The U.S. Air Force has the distinction of accepting the first delivery of Hercules aircraft on Dec. 9, 1956. The U.S. Air Force is the world’s largest Hercules operator, which includes legacy C-130 and C-130J Super Hercules fleets.
C-130s today are operated from 68 nations and the global fleet has collectively logged more than 22 million flight hours. The current production model is the C-130J Super Hercules, the airlifter of choice for 16 nations and 19 different operators. The Super Hercules worldwide fleet has more than 1.3 million flight hours to its credit.
C-130J variants currently in production include the C-130J/C-130J-30 combat-ready aircraft; KC-130J aerial refuelers; HC-130J search and rescue aircraft; MC-130J special operations aircraft; and the LM-100J commercial freighter. To date, C-130s have been produced to support 100 different mission requirements. The C-130J is available in 17 different configurations.