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USAF's last tail gunner has retired - boneyard B-52H reactivated

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Winston

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Tail gunner Rob:

http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/10237/the-u-s-air-forces-last-tail-gunner-has-retired

Resurrected B-52H ‘Ghost Rider’ Reenters Active Service

http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zon...st-rider-reenters-active-service-at-minot-afb

"This was the first time a B-52H has been pulled out of storage and returned to the fleet. 12 other examples remain in type 1000 storage at Davis Monthan AFB, and it looks like the same units and commands that helped resurrected Ghost Rider will be doing it all over again, following the recent loss of a B-52H during takeoff from Andersen AFB, in Guam."

It took a whopping 45,000 man-hours to get the jet fully operational, and the aircraft needed an additional 7,000 hours of work compared with a normal B-52H’s depot-level maintenance. This was due to the fact that the jet had been sitting stagnant for so long, and that Ghost Rider's systems needed to be upgraded so they would be on par with other B-52Hs in the fleet. Tinker’s portion of the $13M project was spread over 272 days.






 

rocketguy101

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I grew up in Tucson, so I passed by the Bone Yard nearly every day...thinking back on all the BUFF tails sticking up in the distance, makes me a little misty-eyed to think one has gone back into service. My uncle worked there, prepping the planes for storage. He is gone now, wonder what he would have thought.
 

TangoJuliet

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I've turned wrenches on that one! I was stationed at Minot AFB, ND, from 9/89-4/93 as a Crew Chief. I left Minot for Whiteman AFB, MO, and the B-2, but the BUFF will always hold a special place in my heart. 56 years old and still in service!
 

Steve Shannon

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I've turned wrenches on that one! I was stationed at Minot AFB, ND, from 9/89-4/93 as a Crew Chief. I left Minot for Whiteman AFB, MO, and the B-2, but the BUFF will always hold a special place in my heart. 56 years old and still in service!
Why not Minot?
Freezin's the reason!


Steve Shannon
 

modeltrains

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Popping in to memory is sometime in late 70s early 80s in one of the off road and truck magazines Dad had, maybe Pickup, Van, and Four Wheel Drive, maybe another, was article about conversion van where fellow fitted van with surpluses ejection seats and B-52 instrument panel parts. Story was that once he got it finished and gave his wife a ride in it he pretty much had to knock down and drag out fight her to get his turn to use his own van! And I remember that when we lived in Macon, GA, during that time my Navy wife Mom one time observing a B-52 heading to or from Warner Robins comment it was a sexy airplane. Which then brings to mind the time in Va Beach watching Wisconsin come in over the horizon my girlfriend Josie commented it was a sexy ship. Women are interesting creatures.
At the moment I live along Missouri River 40-some miles from Whiteman. Interesting what one sometimes sees low following the river. Though not literally true but it gives the sense of it, one time a B-2 came along so low you could see the gravel dings around the wheel wells.
I thought it rude to interrupt the out of towner asking directions somewhere to pull out my camera.
I should have been rude.
And B-2 flying low and slow sound like nothing else.

And then there are the A-10s which occasionally buzz the 40 Hwy and Katy bridges while coming in over the river at sometimes below treetop level.
They are here and gone before my little digital camera boots.
You have like three seconds to do something about them.
I'm glad they are on my side.
 

tightwad

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Excellent articles. Seen the BUFF brings back many memories. I was trained on B-52's, but ended up on C-141's.
 

Winston

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I grew up in Tucson, so I passed by the Bone Yard nearly every day...thinking back on all the BUFF tails sticking up in the distance, makes me a little misty-eyed to think one has gone back into service. My uncle worked there, prepping the planes for storage. He is gone now, wonder what he would have thought.
I was stationed at Davis-Monthan. Drove my ten speed around the perimeter road of the boneyard many times during those beautiful southern AZ sunsets. Took the tour of the boneyard, of course. No idea where the beautiful (film) photos I took have gone.
 

o1d_dude

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Welcome back, BUFF!

Lived upwind of Mather AFB in Cali during the Iran Hostage Crisis and the B52's flew over my home to stage at Anderson AFB in Guam while their birds were staged out in the Indian Ocean. KC-135 tankers used to rattle my windows when they passed over. Loudest things I ever heard and I've been to rock concerts as a yoot.

Anderson AFB is like an aircraft carrier in that the runways are relatively short and end at a cliff over the ocean. High pucker factor for a fully loaded out B52.
 

TangoJuliet

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Anderson AFB is like an aircraft carrier in that the runways are relatively short and end at a cliff over the ocean. High pucker factor for a fully loaded out B52.
Paddy's Point! There's an old B-52D in the water off the end of the runway and at certain times of day, the sun can be seen glimmering off of its tail.
 

o1d_dude

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Paddy's Point! There's an old B-52D in the water off the end of the runway and at certain times of day, the sun can be seen glimmering off of its tail.
Thanks for refreshing my memory. Thought there had been one mishap that ended up in the drink but feared it was a false memory.

Last time I visited Guam was back in 1973 to visit my folks who lived there at the time following Pop's military service.
 

rocketguy101

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I was stationed at Davis-Monthan. Drove my ten speed around the perimeter road of the boneyard many times during those beautiful southern AZ sunsets. Took the tour of the boneyard, of course. No idea where the beautiful (film) photos I took have gone.
When I lived there, there were no tours given. We moved in the mid 70s. Now that the Pima Air Museum has the tour, my nephew took me for a birthday. Very cool to see inside the fence! The F-117 display was pretty cool...

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Viperfixr

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Once upon a time, about 25+ years ago as a young 2nd Lieutenant, I used to give AMARG (Aerospace Maintenance & Regeneration Group, aka Bone Yard) tours about once a month. Very active place that still puts out aircraft on a regular basis. It was always entertaining in the early to mid 1990s to watch F-106s come out of retirement and take that first flight in years. Talk about a 'hard light' afterburner...BOOM!

BTW, the F-117 display has a tinge of sarcasm in it. When the AF was determining where to retire that jet, AMARG was not really an option--might have bruised some feelings. At least they made a funny display out of it all. We used to do much the same at Holloman AFB in the F-117 days, showing a blank parking spot and 'staging' a jet for display, mock forgetting that we 'left the stealth mode on'. Funny how many people really tried looking harder to see it.
 

Winston

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Once upon a time, about 25+ years ago as a young 2nd Lieutenant, I used to give AMARG (Aerospace Maintenance & Regeneration Group, aka Bone Yard) tours about once a month. Very active place that still puts out aircraft on a regular basis. It was always entertaining in the early to mid 1990s to watch F-106s come out of retirement and take that first flight in years. Talk about a 'hard light' afterburner...BOOM!

BTW, the F-117 display has a tinge of sarcasm in it. When the AF was determining where to retire that jet, AMARG was not really an option--might have bruised some feelings. At least they made a funny display out of it all. We used to do much the same at Holloman AFB in the F-117 days, showing a blank parking spot and 'staging' a jet for display, mock forgetting that we 'left the stealth mode on'. Funny how many people really tried looking harder to see it.
The F-22 has fantastic stealth:

 
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