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October Retiree's Corner

Retirees from the South Carolina Air National Guard gather for their monthly luncheon at the Fort Jackson NCO Club on Feb. 7, 2020.

Retirees from the South Carolina Air National Guard gather for their monthly luncheon at the Fort Jackson NCO Club on Feb. 7, 2020, to keep in touch with each other and receive briefings on the work currently being done for Airmen at McEntire Joint National Guard Base, S.C. (U.S. Air National Guard courtesy photo).

MCENTIRE JOINT NATIONAL GUARD BASE, S.C. --

This will be my tenth Desert Storm article honoring all Desert Shield/Storm Call-Ups, and the seventh of ten articles honoring the 169th Consolidated Aircraft Maintenance Squadron. I have expanded more key personnel listings, and my goal is to name and honor as many people as I possibly can in this article and subsequent articles.

The top and key personnel based on several after action reports and listings that I was privileged to get from several sources. They are as follows:

Deputy Commander for Maintenance: Lt. Col. Edwin W. Fisher

Commander: Maj. Charles E. Savage

First Sergeant: Chief Master Sgt. Jerry C. Couch

Organizational Maintenance: Maj. Russell A. Rushe, OIC and Chief Master Sgt. John T. Bowie, NCOIC

Administration Branch: Maj. John V. Harsey, OIC and Senior Master Sgt. Samuel H. Ezzell, NCOIC

Munitions Branch: Capt. David S. Cregger, OIC and Chief Master Sgt. Thomas A. Marshall, NCOIC

Field Maintenance: 1st Lt. Leroy Williams, OIC and Chief Master Sgt. Leo A. Chapmon, NCOIC

Avionics Maintenance: Chief Master Sgt. Joseph F. Kopak, NCOIC

Plans & Scheduling: Senior Master Sgt. Robert E. Berry, NCOIC

Quality Control: Chief Master Sgt. William D. Cliett, NCOIC (although he wasn’t deployed)

Management Analysis: Master Sgt. Charles E. Couch, NCOIC

Programs & Mobility: Master Sgt. Jackie P. Lemacks, NCOIC

Training Management: Master Sgt. Corel C. Sweat, NCOIC

Flight & Lead Crew Chiefs:

A Flight: Senior Master Sgt. Vitalis G. Viavoda

Aircraft 288: Staff Sgt. James R. Long

      “        290: Tech. Sgt. Pat Miller

      “        291: Tech. Sgt. Danny Ward

      “        292: Tech. Sgt. William B. Mustard

      “        293: Master Sgt. Charles E. Dickson

      “        294: Tech. Sgt. Wallace Barry Ward

      “        295: Tech. Sgt. William H. Dimsdale, Jr.

      “        532: Staff Sgt. Kenneth E. Fowler

B Flight: Senior Master Sgt. Eugene Tucker

Aircraft 296: Tech. Sgt. Michael D. Brazell

       “      297:  Master Sgt. James P. Christopher, Jr.

       “      299:  Master Sgt. Albert L. Maw

       “      302:  Tech. Sgt. Albert L. Atkins

       “      304:  Master Sgt. Frederick S. Deshong

       “      305: Tech. Sgt. Dennis D. Burton

       “      306: Tech. Sgt. Hattie R. Monson

       “      308: Staff Sgt. Claude A. Shealy, Jr.

       “      312: Tech. Sgt. James A. Taylor

       “      314: Tech. Sgt. William D. Delavan, Jr.

C Flight: Master Sgt. Julian C. Tanner

Aircraft 317: Tech. Sgt. Steven L. Tanner

       “      319: Tech. Sgt. William L. Allen

       “      320: Tech. Sgt. James D. Turner

       “      321: Master Sgt. Archie S. Thorpe, Jr.

       “      322: Tech. Sgt. Gerard C. McKervey

       “      325: Tech. Sgt. Phillip H. Chandler

This month’s article we are honoring the next group of 47 individuals who were deployed during the Desert Shield/Storm call-up.  Their rank is what they were at the time of deployment and any other pertinent information I have about them plus their rank when they were retired, were discharged, or passed away. They are as follows:

-Staff Sgt. James R. Murphy, Jr. discharged in 1991 and still living as far as I know.

-Tech. Sgt. William B. Mustard (Rusty) retired in 2004 as a Chief Master Sgt. He was the lead crew chief on Plane #292 and is still living.

-Tech. Sgt. James Nicholson retired in 1999 as a Master Sgt. One of twin brothers, worked in Munitions and still living as far as I know.

-Tech. Sgt. John Nicholson retired in 1999 as a Master Sgt. The other twin brother, also worked in Munitions and still living as far as I know.

-Senior Master Sgt. Francis L. Norris retired in 1998 as a Senior Master Sgt. I don’t have any idea if he is still living or not?

-Staff Sgt. Sean O’Hara retired in 2007 as a Master Sgt. and still living. I talked to his son the other day.

-Staff Sgt. Mark A. Olson was discharged in 1994.

-Sgt. Jeffrey B. Orr. At this time I have no information on him.

-Tech. Sgt. Russell S. Oswald retired in 2012 as a Chief Master Sgt. He was in Munitions and is still living.

-Tech. Sgt. Edward G. Ott retired in 1995 as a Master Sgt. He is still living and see him at times at our Luncheons.

-Airman 1st Class Michael D. Painter was discharged in 1992.

-Master Sgt. Arthur Jud Pardue retired in 2001 as a Chief Master Sgt. and is still living.

-Staff Sgt. Steven T. Parker retired in 1995 as Tech. Sgt. I have no idea if he is still living or not.

-Master Sgt. Joseph A. Patterson retired in 1993 as a Master Sgt. I have no idea if he is still living or not.

-Master Sgt. Alfred S. Pederson, Jr., retired in 1997 as a Senior Master Sgt. and believed to be still living.

-Master Sgt. John T. Pedings, retired in 1996 as a Master Sgt. and still living in the Fort Motte community. He and his wife went to Dentsville High with my wife.

-Staff Sgt. Ronald W. Peelman, Jr. I have no information on him.

-Staff Sgt. Russell C. Pentz, I have no information on him.

-Amn. Stanley C. Peoples, I have no information on him.

-Staff Sgt. James L. Perritt, Jr., retired in 2005 as a Master Sgt. I have no idea if he is living or not.

-Staff Sgt. Brian L. Phillips retired in 2005 as a Master Sgt. I have no idea if he is living or not.

-Staff Sgt. Martin Philpott, retired in 2014 as a Chief Master Sgt. I have no idea if he is living or not.

-Tech. Sgt. George J. Poepping, retired in 2006 as a Master Sgt. and still living.

-AB James K. Polk was discharged in 1996.

-Staff Sgt. Robert L. Pressley, retired in 2008 as a Master Sgt. and still living.

-Amn.   Stephen G. Pressley, he was discharged in 1995.

-Staff Sgt. Billy B. Price, Jr., retired in 2006 as a Master Sgt. I have no idea if he is still living or not.

-Sgt. Kenneth Prince, I believe he retired, perhaps with disability. I knew him personally when he was a Master Sgt. in Munitions and still living.

-Airman 1st Class Michael J. Puck, I have no information on him.

-Staff Sgt. Michael W. Quarles, retired in 2020 as a Chief Master Sgt. and still living.

-Tech. Sgt. Malcolm R. Rast, Jr., retired in 2005 as a Senior Master Sgt. He passed away December 5, 2010 and his name is on our Monument.

-Staff Sgt. Gene Raulerson was discharged in 1992.

-Staff Sgt. Allen C. Rawls, retired in 2010 and not sure of what rank. I have no idea if he is still living or not.

-Tech. Sgt. Albert L. Reh, retired in 1999 as a Master Sgt. I have no idea if he is living or not.

-Master Sgt. Thomas E. Riggs, retired in 1995 as a Master Sgt. I have no idea if he is living or not.

-Staff Sgt. James L. Risinger was discharged in 1994.

-Amn. David L. Ritchie, III, transferred to the Air Reserve Personnel Center in 1999.

-Airman 1st Class Thomas F. Ritter was discharged in 2000.

-Sgt. William H. Rives, retired in 2013 as a Tech. Sgt. and I have no idea if he is living or not.

-Sgt. David R. Roach was discharged in 1995.

-Airman 1st Class Jason O. Roberts, retired in 2015 as a Master Sgt. I have no idea if he is living or not.

-Amn. Angelo G. Robinson was discharged in 1992.

-Sgt. Charles B. Robinson, I believe he transferred to the Air Reserve Personnel Center in 1992.

-Staff Sgt. James M. Robinson, retired in 2003 as a Master Sgt. I have no idea if he is living or not.

-Tech. Sgt. Michael D. Robinson, retired in 2008 as a Master Sgt. I have no idea if he is living or not.

-Tech. Sgt. Scott A. Robinson, retired in 2014 as a Chief Master Sgt. I believe he is still  living.

-Master Sgt. Walter C. Rose, Sr., (Bud), retired in 2001 as a Senior Master Sgt. and still living. I see him at some of our Luncheons.

Statistics for this article:  We have 30 people from this group that retired. The other 17 folks were either discharged, transferred, or unknown circumstances. The known 30 people to retire represents 64 percent featured in this article. The breakdown of the 30 Retirees in this article by rank are six Chief Master Sgts., four Senior Master Sgts., 18 Master Sgts., and two Tech. Sgts. The running total of the folks honored thus far for deploying to Desert Storm, 318 have become Retirees, which represents 67.1 percent of the total of 474 deployed folks thus far. The breakdown of the 318 Retired folks is as follows:  two Maj. Gens., four Brig. Gens., 13 Cols.,  15 Lt. Cols., eight Majs., 53 Chief Master Sgts., 52 Senior Master Sgts., 120 Master Sgts., 43 Tech. Sgts., seven Staff Sgts., and one Senior Airman for a total of 318 known Retired Members to date. 

Unfortunately the information I was going to use for this article turned out to be incomplete. But what is not incomplete with the on-going scheduling of various maintenance work amidst the intense combat operations between the period of January 17 to February 27, 1991. Scheduling is easy when there is very little pressure to have routine maintenance done, without the need to provide at least 36 planes daily based on the Air Traffic Orders during combat operations. What impressed me and I am sure many others doing all this while working under hard conditions, which included sandstorms and early on, different Alert levels that would make everyone stop and put MOPP gear on and in many cases take them off or gear down the MOPP condition levels. So amidst all this, it was crazy conditions. It was amazing how it all got coordinated and done with all the different sections working together or the best they could to have the planes loaded full of required munitions while having the required number of planes tasked for each mission. All the while meeting the demands of daily maintenance scheduling.

I ran across a note from Day 11 - January 27, 1991. A crew was tasked to go to Riyadh to do repair work on an F-16 from Hahn AB, Germany that made an emergency landing there, with a hydraulic fuel problem. When they got there in the middle of the night, they were being escorted to the plane and a SCUD missile attack happened. Their escort ran off into the dark, leaving them by themselves on the flight line. 

The plane needed to be de-armed and defueled. The crew did not have the proper tools, but they improvised as much as they could. They finally got a light kit, and de-paneled the plane to find the leak. Once it was located and removed, Master Sgt. Travis Abernathey took the part back to Al Kharj. Once there, he repaired it and did a quality assurance check on it. He returned back to the plane in Riyadh to install the part and fix the plane. A good story. Hats off to Master Sgt. Abernathey and repair crew. 

There was an incident on Day 12 - January 28 of combat operations. Plane #532 aborted. The pilot turned the fuel switch off, causing the airplane’s generator to go off-line. These events fired the hydrazine, exposing four persons to the substance. They were taken to the base hospital for overnight observation. This happened several times when aircraft generators malfunctioned. The hydrazine would have to be purged. 

Next month, hopefully I will deal with both munitions and weapons loading.  

Other deployments and significant happenings during the month of October:

1946  First aircraft assigned to SCANG, an AT-6 Texan.

1950  First activation for extended duty, the Korean Conflict. 321 men were called up.

1961  Notice to be activated for the Berlin Crisis, officially the activation began  

November 1, 1961. 747 men were called up.

1974  First A7-D arrived at the base.

1977  First participation by SCANG in Red Flag at Nellis AFB, Nev.