After the end of its operational life as a TACAMO communications platform, 159348 was also used as a "bounce bird" by the TACAMO community after the communications gear was removed in 1989. It was operated during Desert Storm as a "trash and cattle" hauler by VQ-4 until the TACAMO mission tempo for VQ-4 increased. 159348 was loaned to VR-22, and they operated it as an additional asset during the end of Desert Storm. After the end of Desert Storm 159348 went to the boneyard, and was resurrected by VXE-6 to be used as a "bounce bird" and as a "trash and cattle" hauler during Operation Deep Freeze from 1992-1995. When 159348 came to the end of its required service life period no one wanted to pay for the rework, although the United States Forest Service, the Drug Enforcement Agency, and a couple of other "alphabet soup" named government agencies were interested. There were no takers, so it was given an early retirement at Tinker AFB.
Background and history of this plane here.
By kjfitz @ 2005-10-01 19:02:11