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Georgia base retires rescue helicopter flown since 1994

October 2, 2021 GMT

MOODY AIR FORE BASE, Ga. (AP) — An Air Force base in Georgia has retired a helicopter used to fly combat rescue missions since 1994.

Airmen and spectators gathered at Moody Air Force Base in Valdosta for the final ceremonial flight of the HH-60G chopper.

The base’s 41st Rescue Squadron has flown that model for more than 25 years, news outlets reported, but it’s now being phased out and replaced by a newer version.

Air Force Col. Russell P. Cook says the helicopter that was retired Wednesday flew missions in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as during counterterrorism operations around the Horn of Africa.

Joining the crew for the final flight of HH-60G tail number 26356 was retired Lt. Col. Steve Colby, who was one of the first pilots to fly the aircraft when it was brand new in the 1990s. Colby’s son, now a senior pilot at Moody, also took part in the ceremonial ride.

The grounded helicopter isn’t being sent to a scrapyard. Instead, it’s being put on display at the base’s George W. Bush Air Park.