A Different Ball Game

Some 300 airmen from the 23 Wing at Moody AFB, Ga., deployed to Nellis AFB, Nev., with their newly digitized C model A-10s and found the experience invaluable. The upgraded Warthogs require “different tools, testers, spare parts, crypto, and mission planning and debriefing equipment than the A model,” said Lt. Col. Samuel Milam, 75th Fighter Squadron commander. Participation in the two-week Green Flag at Nellis provided the “first big deployment” with the C models for both the 75th FS pilots and the 23rd Maintenance Group maintainers. “When you’re at your home base, you have all your equipment at your disposal; in a temporary duty assignment or while deployed you must work with what you have,” said MSgt. Kristian Safford, 23rd Avionics Maintenance Squadron avionics chief. During the exercise, the Moody airmen flew about 200 sorties and expended more than 2,000 live cannon rounds and weapons. The Maryland Air National Guard’s 104th FS was the first unit to take the “new” A-10s into combat and told the Daily Report last month that the precision engagement enhancements made the Hogs ideal for the type of close air support missions flown in Iraq. According to Milam, the Green Flag experience pointed up a major difference between the precision upgraded and older Hogs, the “A-10C is much more mission-planning intensive than its predecessor.” (Moody report by A1C Spencer Gallien)