Saturday, December 22, 2007

YC-121F and R7V-2

Predecessors of the C-133 were turboprop mods of the C-121C. Four were built for the navy, modified on the production line. Two later transferred to USAF and the 1700th Test Sq (Turboprop). Now, Roland Berger, in Germany, has done a great Flight Sim version and Carl Kaesar has put together illustrations for the sim. Check out (click on YC-121F Sim or copy the following URL and paste into your internet browser/access program) for pics of the sim airplanes. The flight sim files are at www.AVSIM.COM
or at

Cal Taylor

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

December Book of the Month

Fiftieth Anniversary Edition
By F.A. Hayek
with a new Introduction by Milton Friedman
The University of Chicago Press, 1954

For a closely related documentary video (appears to be from PBS in the same vintage about 50 years ago), click on: Milton Friedman on Limited Government.

THE ROAD TO SERFDOM, by F. A. Hayek may be the most important book of political philosophy written during the lifetime of C-133 crewmembers. Its message was a revelation particularly to the young men and women who were in the armed forces during WWII. Their recent experiences with Fascism and Nazism enhanced their appreciation of the value and meaning of individual freedom. They saw the horrors of socialism as not leading to a utopian State, but to a State besieged with tyranny and criminality.

The Road To Serfdom was first published in England in March 1944, followed by its American debut later that year. In the fifty years since its publication, over 250,000 copies have been purchased. Hayek dedicated the book "To TheSocialists Of All Parties." Hayek noted that in America those intellectuals within the academic institutions, and the New Deal rejected it out of hand as a malicious and disingenuous attack on their finest ideals. He also noted that a large part of the American intelligentsia had caught "the infection" in spite of the experimentation of the New Deal.

Ten years later these same countries that officials had held up as a model for central planning were now being called "totalitarian" and we had entered into the "Cold War." William Rehnquist, a future Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, read it as a Sergeant in the Army Air Force and deemed it probably the most influential book of his professional career. During the post war years it led him and others on the road of knowledge and understanding that personal freedom and economic freedom can be achieved only through individuals pursuing their own objectives. And, most importantly, the free market is the only mechanism that has ever been discovered for achieving participatory democracy.

Hence, the present hope and seeming success of globalization. Democracies have never been known to pursue a war with one another.The concept of free markets continues to infuriate those who believed in the simple and seductive false argument that collectivism (socialism, central planning) would create a utopian world order. In 1945, here and through out the world, it seemed there would be a continuing and steady growth of the state at the expense of the individual, and a steady replacement of private initiative and planning by the state. However, this was a socialist road to abject poverty for the ordinary man and it was rightly checked in the free world: Central planning was sacrificed rather than individual liberty; and, collectivism was too inefficient to mange enterprises. Government failed then as it does now in such central planning endeavors by becoming mired in bureaucratic confusion.

Those countries that continued to pursue socialism had to build fences to keep their citizens from leaving. Presently, reformers in old core western societies, including the U.S., have created a "hodgepodge of ill-assembled and inconsistent ideals" that has largely replaced socialism with the Welfare State. Hayek suggests that achieving (by coercion) these ends is not compatible with the preservation of a free society, as it tends to subordinate personal and economic freedom to the demand of the State. Almost all elections are about the redistribution of personal and business income by the State and that restricts one's freedom. The Road To Serfdom rose from a cry in the wilderness for individual freedom to now become an integral part of the philosophy and governance of the newly freed Iron Curtain countries throughout Eastern Europe. Most have overthrown past collectivist failures to become free market democracies with rapidly growing economies propelled by individuals pursuing their own economic and personal objectives.

While teaching Economics in an MBA program during the 90's, I used The RoadTo Serfdom as required reading. Every week the students were to write a one-page summary of each chapter and to report about personal discussions they had with others. They consistently expressed their amazement that this extraordinary published work had never been brought to their attention during their undergraduate years. They were simply stunned by its enduring truths and its personal applications.

I urge you to read this compelling, timeless message between individual liberty and government authority, as it was the great fight during our life and military service. The Road To Serfdom may be more relevant today then when it was written. Enjoy!

Reviewed for C-133 Crew Members by
Richard L. Spencer
39th ATS 1962-65
To find out more about this enlightening book, and buy it for $5.05, click on: The Road to Serfdom

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Splash Landing

Here's my first attempt at posting a don't see this every day!!
Click on the Play arrow, let it buffer, then play it straight through......

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Really Big Airplane!

Comfort in the air............A380-style!!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Your log book is valuable

My log book entries from C-133 days helped a friend, LtCol Pietro DiSantis, get a VA 100% disability. He has a whole host of prostate problems and associated issues and did not have some documentation of being in-country. He was my AC on two trips, and an excellent man to fly with. I copied the pages from my log book, showing the two trips with him as the pilot. He just sent me a card to say that those pages, along with some other documentation, got him the upgraded disability.

Over the course of writing the book, I have had several contacts from people needing documentation that they were in Vietnam. Because our flight orders did not, in most cases, suffice to prove a person actually landed in Vietnam, it has been difficult for folks to prove it, in some cases.

The point, which I have made to a young loadmaster friend; keep a log book and copies of your flight orders and finance vouchers. They are truly worth money, even after many years.

Cal Taylor

Monday, November 26, 2007

November Book of the Month

Crimes, Terror, Repression
Authored by
Stephane Courtois, et al

For those our age, throughout our military service and most of our civilian lives, we were actively involved in the containment of Communism. And, after reading THE BLACK BOOK OF COMMUNISM, it was for good reason. Communism was the great and evil story of the twentieth century and at its zenith, ruled a third of mankind. It seemed poised to spread indefinitely and then it collapsed like a house of cards. It violated one of the basic tenets of civilization, "Thou shalt not kill."

The book is so revealing of the crimes, terror, and repression of this world wide totalitarian movement, that the authors, all past proponents of Communism, "ten years before would not have believed what they then had to write." The turning point was the collapse of the Soviet Union and the opening of its archives. Advocates could run, but they could nno longer hide from the hideous and devastating truth their beliefs engendered.

The authors and many others wonder why so many on the Left are still unwilling to admit to Communism's cruelty and its failure; especially, since new research makes it look more despicable every day. Such findings are dismissed by the Left as "right-wing, anti-Communist rhetoric" and further explained by the author as encountering one intractable obstacle: "That any realistic accounting of Communist crime would effectively shut the door on Utopia." Unlike Nazism, they conclude that it will be a very long time before Communism is accorded its fair share of absolute evil.

To fully digest what you are about to experience through the reading of THE BLACK BOOK, I recommend that you begin with the Introduction, skip to the Conclusion, then begin the study of the text in full. That allows one to better understand the ensuing depiction of the twentieth century as it was; a century filled with human catastrophes an bloodthirstiness beyond all others. The scale and gravity of Communism's crimes against humanity is estimated at 100 million civilian deaths alone!

Click on the following link for a full accounting of civilian and war deaths: HOW MANY DID COMMUNIST REGIMES MURDER?

The authors attempt to answer some fundamental questions that all ask: Why did Communism immediately turn into a system of bloody dictatorship and criminal activity? Why could its aims only be achieved through extreme violence? How could such crimes be thought of as a part of normal procedure for so many decades? Socialism seemed to beget violence; and power was achieved and held through the terrorizing of its citizens.

Throughout Communist history, supposed enemies of the State were pejoratively labeled as leeches, rats, enemy agents, and capitalists. Such derogatory classifications of the enemy created the justification for terror, and totalitarian states need enemies to survive. There was no need for citizens to actually have done anything at all; extermination was in order to discipline and punish; enemies were to be killed. Trials, famine, and concentration camps were organized in the strictest secrecy and legitimized as a method.

The last remaining matter posed by the authors is why have scholars neglected the crimes committed by the Communists while names such as Himler and Eichmann are infamous? Why as the academic community neglected its duty to speak the truth? Why do Lenin, Mao, Ho Chi Minh, and even Stalin enjoy a surprising reverence among them?

The answer revolves about the concealment of the misdeeds by the perpetrators and the systematic attack against all who dared expose the crimes. But, the indifference of contemporary scholars to the criminal dimension of Communism and to their fellow humans can never be forgotten. It borders on criminality itself.

I have often thought about the twentieth century without the worldwide spread of Communism. Would there have been something even more evil with which to deal? What would our lives have been? How powerful would America have needed to be? What would the world be if the twentieth century had not been so bloody? What effect would Nazism have had?

There are many insights to be gained by thinking of the paths not followed; some good and some bad, but it was what it was and we lived it. As for the U.S., one scholar noted that "Democracy is hard or everybody would have it." After reading THE BLACK BOOK OF COMMUNISM, we should never think of Democracy as being too onerous, but more a joy of life to be protected to the last man. Thank you, and your comments are well appreciated.

Reviewed for C-133 Crew Members by
Richard L. Spencer

39th ATS 1962-65

To find out more about this enlightening book, and buy it for $15.49, click on: The Black Book of Communism

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

A Great Idea!

From Sandy Sandstrom

When you're making out your Christmas card list this year, please include the following:

A Recovering American Soldier
c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center
6900 Georgia Avenue,NW
Washington,D. C. 20307-5001

And while you're at it, please pass it on to your e-mail list.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

West Coast Reunion Planned

From John Burnet-

The next west coast reunion will be 17-18 May 2008. Let John know, if you are interested


Friday May 16 , 2008 PICNIC Pena Adobe Vacaville, CA

Saturday May 17, 2008 DINNER Hampton Inn Vacaville, CA

Details will be mailed out in late January or early February

Hope to see you in May. John and Jetta Burnett

Cal Taylorfirstfleet publishersThe C-133 Project

S/N 90536 has a Beaver Tail!

Congratulations to the Crew at Air Mobility Command Museum, Dover AFB, DE, for completing another project in the restoration of ol' 90536! Sandy Sandstrom says, "The airplane is now complete with the exception of the right landing gear problem. We are having the main support beam machined in the shop, so everyone is holding their breath until that is completed." Here are some great photos by Harry Heist II, Archivist/Editor Hangar Digest, AMC Museum.

Tail cone was installed 30 August. Those who worked on the installation are: Jimmy Nolan, Ted Marshall, Larry Phillips, Hank Baker, Ed Barnes, Doc Adams and Garry Burris --- on the high reach is MSgt Rick Veller

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

October Book of the Month

Vasily Grossman

Vasily Grossman (1905-1964) was born in present-day Ukraine and was a combat correspondent for the Red Star during WWII, covering from the defense of Stalingrad through the fall of Berlin. He then wrote the first ever account in any language of a German death camp. During the War Grossman¹s Red Star articles were of great importance to the Soviet population; and, as a morale booster, soldiers at the front would read aloud from a single copy. His articles were particularly relevant for the truthfulness that was knowingly in short supply. According to historians, there really was no journalistic parallel in the West to Red Star's role on the Eastern Front. From these combat experiences was born LIFE AND FATE.

The initial manuscript was seized and suppressed by the KGB in 1960. Grossman was then advised by the chief ideologue from the Khrushchev years that it would be another 200 or 300 years before such a novel could be published. But, as we know, history intervened; and, since its translation, LIFE AND FATE is considered a masterpiece. Grossman died before its publication and is now praised as Tolstoy's heir apparent. Grossman is considered the only Soviet writer to change his spots completely: "The slave in him died and a free man arose." He was known for his courage during the years of the Great Terror and in 1938 confronted the State's executioner about his wife's imprisonment. Thus, this fearless man began his move toward dissidence as well as his search for the absolute truth. He would write only what he thought through, felt through, and suffered through.

LIFE AND FATE is centered upon the defense of Stalingrad and is probably the most significant account of this bloodiest battle of the 20th century. It has been conservatively estimated that Stalingrad cost the lives of 2.7 million to include military and civilian. That number is now being increased as records previously closed to researchers are opened. Russia's ultimate victory in defending Stalingrad from German capture is considered by many military historians a major, if not the major, turning point in the War. Amazingly, Grossman is able to chronicle the War between these two fascist States in its most destructive horror and at the same time detail the characteristics of the slow demise of the civilian populations at the hand of their fanatical leaders and functionaries.

The novel's structure is similar to WAR AND PEACE as the life of an entire country is evoked through a number of subplots involving members of a single family. A list of chief characters assists greatly during the reading. Grossman felt through his writing it was his moral duty to speak on behalf of the dead. That brings us to this final, stunning irony: In victory, Communism ultimately became the mirror image of National Socialism, sinking rapidly into crime and terror. No heresy could have been more shocking for the deceased defenders of Stalingrad than the Soviet Union ending up much like Nazi Germany. In the end, the people of Stalingrad's brave fight for freedom was nullified as personal horror and criminal activity became the Soviet norm.

Lastly, THE BLACK BOOK OF COMMUNISM has recorded and analyzed the worldwide crimes of Communist regimes lying to rest the myth of well-intentioned founders. The significance of Communism in the hierarchy of violence that is the history of the twentieth century is unparalleled. LIFE AND FATE speaks directly to those 25 to 30 million civilian deaths at the hands of the former Soviet Union ruled by Communists. No one can now claim ignorance about the criminal nature of Communism and Grossman was the first Soviet writer courageous enough to reveal its evil.

I found LIFE AND FATE to be the best novel I have ever read. Grossman was so unflinchingly true in his ability to depict the tragedy of WWII that one lives every scene. He clearly portrays the confrontation of the "Individual versus the State" that only a Russian could write. This novel should be of particular interest to C-133 crewmembers as many were WWII veterans and we were all part of the Cold War that ensued from Communism's ugly desire to rule the world.


Reviewed for C-133 Crewmembers by Rick Spencer
To find out more about this enlightening book, and buy it for $12.07, click on: LIFE AND FATE

Friday, September 28, 2007


Jim Dugar has provided the following link to some incredibly high quality photos, apparently taken during the recent flight of the shuttle Endeavor; space walks and one of Hurricane Dean. These are "must see." Click on: NASA Endeavor photos. Thank you, Jimmy!

Leave a Comment (click on "x comments" below) about what land mass/island you think that is in the background of the first photo???????

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Wake Island Revisited

We all spent lots of hours at Wake Island and have mental pictures of just what it was like. There was a huge typhoon in 2006 that really did lots of damage. This link takes you to a bunch of photos taken by a member of the team that went out to check things out.

Click on:

Cal Taylor

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Alaska Bird

Fred Galey provided the following photos of a C-133A (tail number N199AB, formerly 61999 at Dover AFB) "still flying in Alaska," taken by his son, Fred Galey, Jr, from the cockpit of a FedEx MD 11 in July, 2007. THANK YOU, FRED & FRED JR!!!!

The following is a relevant excerpt from Wikipedia:
"Two C-133As have been in storage at Mojave Airport, California, since the 1970s. They are N201AR (ex-62001) and N136AR (ex-40136). They are owned by Cargomaster Corp, Ted Stevens International Airport, AK, which also owns and occasionally flies C-133A N199AB (ex-61999). That aircraft was never certificated by the Federal Aviation Administration for civilian operation. Thus, it must fly as a government aircraft, mostly for the State of Alaska, where the last known flights were in the summer of 2004. The ANC based aircraft flew test flights and then a real flight, carrying fire trucks and heavy equipment to the bush, on April 18th, 2006."
I then Googled the Cargomaster Corporation mentioned above and discovered the following two websites with more description & photographs of their three aircraft. Click on Cargomaster on the Go! and Goleta Air & Space Museum.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

C-133 1:100 resin model

There is a new C-133 model on the street. Cast in resin, it is imported and distributed by Nostalgic Plastic. Check the C-133 web site ( for a thorough and positive review. There is a link to the dealer, who has quite a selection of other things.

The decal sheet includes markings for five different A- and B-models. Harry Heist worked with Chris Mikesh, at Nostalgic Plastics, to insure accuracy.

Cal Taylor

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Book of the Month

Harry G. Frankfurt
Now, here is a little writing of 67 pages that is absolutely delightful. Frankfurt begins the first sentence of the book by declaring "One of the most salient features of our culture is that there is so much bullshit." At our age we can certainly agree, but do we have a clear understanding of what bullshit is, or why there is so much of it? If that intrigues you, then this is the read for you.
Frankfurt begins by developing a theoretical understanding through philosophical analysis of what it is. He does not consider the misuses of the term in one's everyday vocabulary. Rather, he focuses upon how and why it has become so prevalent, and the distinction between a liar and a bullshitter, given their sincerity when showering us with their thoughts.
The crux of this distinction according to Frankfurt is "Both represent themselves falsely as endeavoring to communicate the truth." Development of this argument makes fascinating reading and has major applications to one's understanding of public officials, talking heads, news reporting, and, unfortunately, friends. Frankfurt suggests that bullshit becomes unavoidable when one is required to talk without knowing what he is talking about. His final thought is that sincerity itself is bullshit given the nature of other things. I will not elaborate further as that would ruin your study of this disease that is so common and has no known cure. But, I can guarantee that by reading this analysis you will be able to distinguish bullshit for what it is, and those who are the main propagators.
Harry G. Frankfurt is a renowned moral philosopher and Professor Emeritus at Princeton University, and his work is serious even when considering this, heretofore, somewhat forbidden subject. As always, enjoy!
Reviewed for C-133 Crewmembers by Rick Spencer
To find out more about this delightful book, and buy it for $4.08, click on: ON BULLSHIT

Into the Sky Blue Yonder

Here's a link to a great video plus other interesting links like "WWII Air Museum" and "Fly Air Combat Manuevers."

Click on: Air Power

Hoot of the Month

Sandy says, "I don't see a problem here. He is wearing a safety helmet, and his marshalling signals look like they are "by-the-book". Obviously, it was also one of those HOT summer days. HA!"

Subject : How to get kicked out of the AF 101. A few days ago somebody found a pic of a KC-135 guy marshaling a jet in his underwear. The next day Airman Jerknuts of our grand 34th AMU decided to out do the tanker guy. I think our guy won! The chief lost his mind over this. He read 11 people their rights and they all lawyered up. The chief confiscated a bunch of cameras (not before the pics got put on laptops of course) The kid asked everyone if they minded, including the aircrew and super, no one cared. There's a huge cluster-gaggle with it. Apparently every lawyer in the AOR plus a few extras have to be flown in for this.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Old Photo ID

Jimmy Donlan provided the following old photos, plus one "more current" view of him on his lake with his friends, Bud & Bud Light!! The question is: WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE???? You can help identify them. Just click on the Comment label at the bottom and enter your information......

Check Terry Wall's Comment added below on 8/23 (THANKS, TERRY!!) He ID'd some of those shuffleboarders, and asked a couple questions. Any answers??

If you have more old photos, please send them to for Posting.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Smilin' Sandy

Sandy Sandstrom and the Dover AMC Museum "Project" on static display........

Sandy & Erich Hausner (thanks for the great photos!!!)

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Smart-xxx Ground Crews

New "intelligence" provided by Richard Huey & Alan Harding:

Supposedly, it takes a college degree to fly a plane, but only a high school diploma to fix one. Reassurance for those who fly routinely in our jobs. After every flight, UPS pilots fill out a form, called a "gripe sheet," which tells mechanics about problems with the aircraft. The mechanics correct the problems, document their repairs on the form, and then pilots review the gripe sheets before the next flight. Never let it be said that ground crews lack a sense of humor. Here are some actual maintenance complaints submitted by UPS' pilots (marked with a P) and the solutions recorded (marked with an S) by maintenance engineers. By the way, UPS is the only major airline that has never, ever had an accident.

P: Left inside main tire almost needs replacement.
S: Almost replaced left inside main tire.

P: Test flight OK, except auto-land very rough.
S: Auto-land not installed on this aircraft.

P: Something loose in cockpit.
S: Something tightened in cockpit

P: Dead bugs on windshield.
S: Live bugs on back-order

P: Autopilot in altitude-hold mode produces a 200 feet per minute descent.
S: Cannot reproduce problem on ground.

P: Evidence of leak on right main landing gear.
S: Evidence removed.

P: DME volume unbelievably loud.
S: DME volume set to more believable level.

P: Friction lock cause throttle levers to stick.
S: That's what friction locks are for.

P: IFF inoperative in OFF mode.
S: IFF always inoperative in OFF mode.

P: Suspected crack in windshield.
S: Suspect you're right.

P: Number 3 engine missing.
S: Engine found on right wing after brief search.

P: Aircraft handles funny.
S: Aircraft warned to: straighten up, fly right, and be serious.

P: Target radar hums.
S: Reprogrammed target radar with lyrics.

P: Mouse in cockpit.
S: Cat installed.

P: Noise coming from under instrument panel. Sounds like a midget pounding on something with a hammer.
S: Took hammer away from midget.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Book of the Month

Recommended reading from Rick Spencer:

The Vietnam War, 1954-1965
Mark Moyar, Ph.D.

Mark Moyar, Associate Professor at the U.S. Marine Corps University, hasauthored a most remarkable history of the Vietnam War, Triumph Forsaken. Most crewmembers that read this site have an abiding interest in that intervention. The C-133 had a major supply role beginning early in the War; so early, that after returning from a trip one was often asked, "Where is Saigon?" It was not long before every American knew that answer.

As you read Triumph Forsaken, you will live it. The memories of personal involvement with Vietnam and the C-133 will once again be vivid. You will savor each page as Moyar tells a story contrary to that promulgated by the theology of past authors who purport that Vietnam "was a war-mongering plot crafted by policy makers and soldiers." He tells this different story with the clarity and accuracy that many readers experienced. During his research, Dr, Moyar was granted access to much new material from both American and Communist archives that provided detailed accounts of the political and military battles at home and abroad. Open to any page of Triumph Forsaken and one is provided with in-depth analysis that regularly takes an axe to many of the beliefs still commonly held by the Left.

Triumph Forsaken began as a single volume history that has been expanded to two volumes, with the second due out soon. In reading, one will find compelling evidential blame about those who acted without regard for the truth in order to enhance their own political and personal agenda. Moyar's examples of such prevarication by the major news journalists, Ambassador Lodge, and Presidents Kennedy and Johnson, are abundant. That turns out to be one of the saddest commentaries for the Country and for those who served during that period. Additionally, Triumph Forsaken serves as an outstandingly good mirror for the present Iraq and Afghanistan War that is confronting global terrorism on its home turf. In that regard one reviewer, MG Scales, opines that it paints a picture that is clear: "Iraq and other related post 9/11 conflicts will require perseverance, resources, and resolve."

I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this well researched, enlightened history of Vietnam and I hope you will as well!

To find out more about this book, and how to buy it for $16.63, click on: Triumph Forsaken

Thursday, July 26, 2007

S/N 0536 Beavertail Update

This just in from Sandy Sandstrom (stay photos to follow):

Our beavertail is here as of yesterday and we will attempt to install it on Tuesday, 31 July. This will make the aircraft complete (click on: B Model 0536 at the AMC Museum ). We have other work to do as well. The crew entrance door must be dismantled and a new cable installed, paint will have to be applied in several places and the decals are fraying and/or comming off. We have some of them, but we will have to aquire the rest. The MX never stops. Would that we had an indoor facility. Oh well, we always said "We have done so much with so little, we can do anything with nothing".


Wednesday, July 25, 2007

One More New/Old Contact!

Hey Tom from Vermont!! THANKS for the Comment on our Crews on the Wing post! We appreciate hearing from you......BUT we don't have your e-mail address. How about it? You could list it in a Comment on this Post, or e-mail it to

Monday, July 23, 2007

Need Your Help!

Sandy Sandstrom and Dick Hanson have just about exhausted all their ideas for building an e-mail address list.......we now have 35. We know our C-133 Crew colleagues value the opportunity to re-connect and sustain old friendships with a common interest. E-mails are not only a cheap and easy way to do that on a personal basis, but it would be much easier and cheaper to communicate with everyone on a frequent basis.

Thanks to the previous Reunion planners, we do have a roster of about 170 names, mailing addresses and phone numbers. So we do plan to make a snail mailing at some point to cover everyone. But with only 20% of those listing e-mail addresses, and we know even some with e-mail addresses don't use them much, it would make for much more active and interesting communications to get a lot more people involved.

I will be sending this same request to the 35 names we do have. PLEASE, review our "Send To" list, and let us know additional e-mail addresses you have. Reply to the e-mail you receive, or just list what you have in the Comment section of this Post.

We are also preparing a questionnaire to survey colleagues about their interests and preferences for the next Reunion. Again, the best way to do that is via e-mail, so we'll be ready as soon as you help us build up our list.


Tuesday, July 17, 2007

South African Bush Pilot

Imagine you are a South African bush pilot. You fly in some critical medical supplies and enjoy a quick lunch at the hospital. It's a stifling 100 degrees in the shade and you're eager to get back up to the cool, high blue yonder. On the way back to your plane, you discover that the only bit of shade within ten miles has become very popular. You start calculating the distance to the plane door and wonder . . . "Do I feel lucky today?"

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Air Poland

Words not necessary!

Secret Missions East

Yes, I remember as well being on a few 'secret missions' normally a SAM. These were in the early 60's and to India. The crew, all with Top Secret clearances, were briefed in a small room at KDOV base ops and advised to carry weapons. Also, we were to wear civilian clothes after flying East from Germany. Lastly, the families, when calling the Squadron, could only be told that the mission had departed Germany in an Easterly direction with no knowledge of time of return or destination.One of these missions took us to Dum Dum AP in Calcutta where we landed in 'secrecy'. And, we were able to enjoy the beginning of the Monsoon season! However, I was the 39th squadron historian and noticed a complete report of our arrival in the local newspaper and brought a copy back to include in the monthly analysis of the squadron's work.After landing we flew VFR for about an hour without filing a flight plan to a seemingly abandoned WWII base on the Northern border and off loaded 'listening apparatus'. We never really knew what we carried on these missions and never really asked.There were a lot of SAM missions in the early 60's almost all to interesting places with interesting cargo. I do not remember the other crew members as I did not keep orders that I can now review.

Rick Spencer
July 11, 2007 4:19 PM

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Secret Missions to Norway

In Oct 61, Don Coyle flew a classified mission to Norway, one of several such. Does anyone know anything about such missions? Coyle picked up a Norwegian nav at Bodo, then flew north around the top of Norway. To escape Soviet radar detection, they descended to 300' AGL, below the tops of the fjord walls, flying to a field built by the Germans during WW2. It was probably near Kirkenes. The unknown cargo was discharged to trucks on a small road near the field.The field was a single runway to narrow to turn around, so the airplane had to be backed to the end of the runway for departure.

Changing the Art of War

C-133 Members: Here is a book that you will all enjoy. It always amazes to read of those from humble backgrounds that do so much to create change. Much of such has been done by members of the USAF. Let me know how you like this reading and some of you may have known him.
"Boyd, The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War"
by Robert Corham
Little, Brown and Co. 2002
ISBN 0-316-88146-5

People from Pennsylvania are always proud of their heroes and they have had many throughout their history . United States Air Force Colonel John Richard Boyd(1927-1997) from Erie is one of them. Corham suggests Boyd “ the most influential military theorist since Sun Tzu.” Mostly unknown except to a small group that met every Wednesday night for over thirty years at the Officers Club at Fort Myer next to Washington, DC., this group was noted to be unsurpassed in America for their contribution to national defense.

Boyd served in W.W.II, Korea, and Vietnam and was known as “Forty Second Boyd” because of his ability to invert upon flight training opponents within 40 seconds. In 1960 Boyd completed his “Aerial Attack Study”, a manual which became the official tactics for fighter aircraft. After that he began more ground breaking work with his revolutionary “Energy-Maneuverability Theory”(E-M) which changed people’s fundamental understanding of aviation. E-M could quantify under combat conditions the performance of American aircraft, of “threat aircraft”, and could be used to design fighter aircraft. Corham notes Boyd as the father of the legendary A-10, F-15, and F-16.

Next came one of the few papers Boyd ever wrote, “Destruction and Creation”, 1976. Written in order to understand the thought processes he used when developing his E-M Theory, Corham calls it a window into Boyd’s mind. In order to more fully appreciate Corham’s biography of Boyd and Boyd himself, I recommend it be read first.

Corham now relates how Boyd turned to probably his most important work-a timed based theory of conflict-whoever can handle the quickest rate of change is the one who survives. Thus began what was to become Boyd’s most famous legacy: the Observe-Orient-Decide-Act cycle. Called the OODA Loop I recently found about 1500 references to it on the internet. The OODA Loop when properly used against an enemy causes panic and confusion , unraveling and disorientation before the battle begins; and, lastly, an unexpected lighting thrust . They rarely understand what has happened. The Marine Corps introduced the OODA Loop into combat operations before the USAF. This concept remains today as the basis for military operations.

For those interested in how one man can change the Pentagon’s view in waging warfare this is a must read. It is slow in the middle but perseverance pays the reader. I have had conversations with former Pentagon reporters from Boyd’s era who say Corham’s depiction of Boyd is accurate. They remember him as loud, profane, opinionated, confrontational, and unorthodox. Always ready to take on a defense contractor or a General. Another following in Boyd’s footsteps as an unorthodox military analysts from whom the Pentagon has taken intellectual cues is Thomas Barnett. He deserves your attention as well (reference earlier Post on June 25th on "Globalization").

Classic 133 "War Story"

Ted Feindt, who provided a photo from Nord in an earlier Post (click on "A New/Old Connection" in the Archive at the right), when challenged, has provided proof that it was May, 1964 with the following copy of the official Flight Order (yes, you were "anal" Ted). Ted's story of the "unauthorized air drop" is one of those cherished memories!! Let's have some more!

Dick, in response to Marion Johnson's comment to you that the Thule - Nord shuttles were flown later in the summer, be advised that the photo of Maj. Alex Witmer and myself was, in fact, taken at Nord sometime between 20 May and 28 May 1964. I've forwarded to you via email a copy of the 1st ATS flight order for that mission. Please post the order on the blog (I have copies of flight orders for EVERY mission that I flew while assigned to the 1st ATS each annotated with the actual itinerary - Okay, I was a little anal!). I recall that we also made an "unauthorized" airdrop on that mission. We purloined a condemed parachute from the Thule crew survival shop and attached a package with cans of fruit juice and frozen fish for the men and dogs, respectively, of a Danish expedition out on the north coast of Greenland west of Nord. On our next flight to Nord from Thule, we skillfully located the expedition in a fjord and using my best CARP computation, we dropped the chute and package. At this point we became aware of the fact that it was the practice at that time to CUT the shroud lines on condemed chutes. The package reached the ground significantly before the chute while still accelerating. Boy, were we embarassed! None of the cans of juice survived the drop, but, we were told that the dogs enjoyed the fish.
June 27, 2007 9:30 PM

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Crews on the Wing

So my question is, if SAC crews can do it on a B-52, why can't we do it on a C-133 at our next reunion???

Monday, June 25, 2007

Tom Barnett on Globalization

Our colleague, Rick Spencer, Navigator, 39th ATS, early 60s, offers the following. Click on the link at the end, and check it out; then leave a comment on your thoughts:

C-133 members: I would like to introduce you to the author and futurist Thomas Barnett. He has written two books; "The Pentagon's New Map" and "Blueprint for Action". Barnett is considered the most influential defense intellectual writing these days and PNM is considered the most influential book of our time relating to the future role of the military. He ties together the importance of combined security, economic, political, and cultural factors to create a new world paradigm to replace that of the cold war. And, that is what makes his writing so interesting to our group as we were all a part of the cold war. The world has changed and the role of the military has really changed.To get you started I am listing a site that shows him giving his "brief" and I will follow that up with other sites every few days that depict his thinking.His counter intuitive thinking is simply stunning and a jolt to those of our age. But, it is difficult to refute even when not in agreement. Gobalization has created a world that has largely moved beyond us and belongs to our grandchildren. Give him a try if this peaks your interest. Here is the site:

June 25, 2007 8:41 PM

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

A New/Old Connection

Thanks for the Comment, Ted Feindt, Navigator, 1st ATS, early 60s! . And thanks for the great photo of you and our boss, Major Alex Witmer, up at Station Nord in May, 1964. AWESOME!
I sure remember those shuttles from Thule in the summer, landing on the ice, hauling supplies to the Danish weather station. Those Danes were thrilled to get rides back to "civilization" at Thule for R&R!! I also Googled your name, and got the photo you posted on the Aviation Enthusiast Corner website....ol' 71612 up at Station Nord. Then I found by clicking on that photo, it brought up the airplane specs and more photos.
I'll add your e-mail address to the list we're building and keep you in touch. Sorry we weren't connected in time to see you at the reunion......definitely plan on the next one!! Put this blog address on your Favorites list and check back periodically for new posts.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Welcome Aboard, Cal!

Cal Taylor, author of the remarkable book with a red cover, Remembering an Unsung Giant, has listed a crosslink notice on his website about this blog (click on the title), and has graciously agreed to be a "contributing author." We look forward to his insights to help stimulate more interest and participation.

Here's his first Comment:

firstfleet said...
After the reunion, I visited the National Museum of the USAF, at Wright-Patterson AFB. C-133A 62008 is now inside, protected from the weather. it looks excellent, surrounded by other planes much smaller. There was talk that it would be displayed with an Atlas on its transporter lined up behind. But, the museum could not find the rails that were used. Plus, that would take up a huge amount of floor space. Still, this is one C-133 that is protected the best from weather, birds and all of the other problems that the airplanes stored outside suffer. I enjoyed the reunion a whole lot and it was a great pleasure to meet so many people from the Dover squadrons.Thanks to everyone who contributed so much to the book.
June 5, 2007 1:44 PM

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Beaver Tail & Other Info

Sandy Sandstrom contributed a Comment on the original Post which I've copy-and-pasted below so it would be more visible to anyone visiting this blog. He's also interested in doing some research with all our colleagues to obtain input on opinions and ideas about the "next reunion" (when, where, etc). So that's part of building a current address list (both snail mail and e-mail) so we can access our colleagues. There are many ways you can help, including passing along contact info. Please e-mail me ( or Sandy ( ). Here's his note:

We should be getting the C-133 Beaver tail shortly. It is being manufactured in N.J. and I understand they are close to finshed. When it arrives, the C-133 folks will attach it and then it will be as complete as we can make it. I do need the e-mail addresses and home addresses of all hands for the next reunion. We have a lot of volunteers to put it together but a lot of questions have to be answered.

Monday, May 28, 2007

My Beautiful America

Another great Memorial Day tribute (click on and turn up the sound): My Beautiful America.

By the way, if you're not familiar with blogs, click on anything underlined to take you to a different site.

King of the Road II

I couldn't resist Posting the following photo I just received through another e-mail network. Some of you know about our "King of the Road" Yamaha motorcycle Chet Baffa, Jimmy Dugar and I had while we were on active duty at Dover.....lots of stories! So this photo looks like a "sequel" machine to me! I'll bet our Engineers who rehabbed that 133 B Model could build one of these!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Support Our Troops!

Welcome to our C-133 Crew blog! If this is your first visit, I hope you scroll down through the previous Posts to see the photos and get the background, AND offer a Comment, AND check back periodically!

Yes, we all supported our troops in Viet Nam back in the 60s by flying those shuttles across the Pacific. Today, the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, 2007, while I'm comfortably retired and Blessed in our home on a beautiful weekend in Minnesota, I'm thinking of our troops in Afghanistan and Iraq, and those military families back home, especially those dealing with the seriously injured returning from battle. I just watched a very moving program on PBS celebrating those troops and their families. One highlight was Colin Powell inviting all of us to make a commitment to reach out to those families. Click on the Wounds of War, and scroll down the story of the Wade's to the various resources offering voluteer opportunities. I did. I hope it makes the impact on you that it did on me.

On a lighter note, one of our colleagues, Rick Spencer, resurrected the recipe for those Mai Tai's we all remember from Hickam (see the following). Thank you, Rick! Hope you're having a great Memorial Day weekend!


During the spring and summer of 1962 several newly minted crew members arrived at DAFB to fly C-133's for the 1st and 39th ATS. Almost immediately flights to SEA and Viet Nam began with frequent stops at Hickam AFB, HI. For most of us it was our first time visiting the Pacific region and HI was a favorite stop; especially since this trip usually took about 20+ days and served as an escape from Dover¹s nasty winters. Highly favored by the crewmembers at all of the military clubs on the base was an exotic warm weather drink called a MAI TAI. These were thoroughly enjoyed while sitting on the terrace overlooking Pearl Harbor gazing at the Navy ships passing by. Here is the original 1962 recipe from the Hickam AFB Officer's Club as saved for over 40 years by a former Dover AFB crewmember, Bob Miley, and reconstructed by Rick Spencer. Imbibe and enjoy the memory.

Begin with 14 0z Mai Tai glass of crushed ice.
Then, create a mix from the following ingredients and pour into the glass:
1/4 oz Orgeat Syrup
1 oz Guava Juice
1 oz Pineapple Juice
1 oz Sweet Sour Mix
Then, layer in order over the ice and the above mix
1/2 oz Bacardi Gold Rum (or other of that type)
1 oz Meyer Dark Rum
1/2 oz Lemon Hart Rum ­ 151 proof
1 Pineapple Wedge

**Please note that the Rums should be layered over the mix with the light,dark, and the 151 proof applied last and on top. The finished product is served with a straw. Do not mix or stir the Rums as that ruins the layering effect. Let them mix naturally and sip only.

Richard L. Spencer, Ph.D.
Lt. Col. USAF Ret.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Dover Reunion: Party Time

Hallelujah! Got our first "contribution" -- Dick Huey offered a Comment on the first post. Thanks for breaking the ice, Dick. Sorry we missed you at the Reunion. If anyone checking in needs help entering a Comment or New Post, let me know by private e-mail. Just click on the underlined link at the bottom of "About Me" at the right, then click again on "e-mail."

Here are a few more photos from the Reunion, starting with the Hanson/Miley/Irwin/Becht Quartette at the dinner table at Sambo's:

Nice smile, Jimmy Dugar, but I can't get Rick Spencer to look at the camera:

Bob "Ace Photographer" Miley at the Saturday banquet:

The "Auxiliary" (Charlotte Dugar, Gail Miley, and Diane Hanson) checking old photos from the 60s:

Here's Bob Becht, Gail Miley, Jim Dugar & Jerry Foss looking over the Cal Taylor book:

Rick "Tiger" Spencer, Golf Champion!!!!

Ron Irwin & Bob Becht kibbitz, while Bob Miley and Alan Harding figure out this fancy camera equipment:

Jim Dugar and Lenny Moffet plan the next Reunion while Bob Miley takes a "tongue in cheek" approach!

It's "The Last Hurrah" NOT!!! See you at the next one:

Monday, May 7, 2007

Newcomer Clue

Welcome! I'm glad you found our C-133 Crew Connection blog. If you're new to blogging, you'll notice that you need a "reverse thrust" to catch up, since the most recent Post is at the top. You should scroll down to the bottom to start reading the earliest Post listed......OR click on an Archive item at the right (again listed in the sequence posted, bottom to top). I hope you'll list the site name, CargomasterRaster, in your Favorites list, visit frequently, and become comfortable contributing your own Comments and New Posts. These things only work if we keep them "fresh." Let's get that Hit Counter rolling!

Dover Reunion

Here's my first attempt at using this blog as a photo album. Hopefully others can add to it, such as more photos from the reunion, or better yet, some old photos from the '60s. I encourage appropriate visitors to add their comments to an existing post, or add a new post.

Here is Bob Becht, AC, and me, Dick Hanson, Nav, ready on the Flight Line!

Below that's Jim Daugherty, Al Harding, Sandy Sandstrom, and Bob Becht. What a Crew!

And this is Yours Truly, back in the Nav seat, a little "rusty" after 42 years!

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Take Off Time

Welcome to the launch of this experimental blog intended to be The C-133 Crew Connection! Who knows where this may lead? Maybe like some of the trips we all logged....NOWHERE! But, if it catches on, it could be a creative source of memories, entertainment, and maybe even enlightenment!

I'm fresh off our visit to the 2007 Dover Reunion. Seeing firsthand the result of all the work our colleagues put into the restoration of ol' B Model 0536 at the AMC Museum really made an impact (click on that underlined hyperlink to go to the website photos). Climbing those steps, walking past the recliner seats in the "lounge," and sitting in the Nav seat, with my frequent AC, Bob in the Left Seat, brought back another life from a distant past.......the 2,000+ hours boring through the sky, interrupted by moments of stark terror; the dozens of air bases and Military Clubs visited around the world; and all the off-duty hi-jinks with all the various crew members, especially when AOCP in some exotic land......Oh, the stories! I'm inspired to re-connect with more of you!

You're a bunch of clever guys, and I'm eager to invite your contributions to the CargomasterRaster:

Main Entry: ras.ter
Function: noun
Pronunciation: 'ras-t&r
Etymology: German, from Latin raster, rastrum rake, from radere to scrape: a scan pattern (as of the electron beam in a cathode-ray tube) in which an area is scanned from side to side in lines from top to bottom.

Sounds like a blog about C-133s to me! And it rhymes! And the CRT analogy certainly relates to the vintage of equipment we used. It was striking to me to see just how ancient that black equipment looked; and all those buttons! I must have known what they were all for at some point out of Nav school.

If any of you veteran crew members actually find this blog, I'm guessing you're probably not very experienced in the blogosphere. And you may be uncomfortable posting on a site available to the public, aka don't want your identity traceable. Well feel free to contribute with any pseudonym. Then you can click on My Profile and send me a direct e-mail to identify yourself privately. But please contribute.........ANYTHING relevant to your C-133 experience; stories, questions, answers, ideas, advice, whatever. It will only be as interesting as you help make it.

I'll continue to enhance it with links to other relevant websites, photos, or your ideas. And we can have a living resource to help us build to the next Reunion!