Alenia North America last month flew the first of 18 G.222—military designation C-27A—that its parent Alenia Aeronautica is refurbishing near Naples, Italy, for use by the Afghanistan National Army Air Corps. According to a Sept. 3 release from the 438th Air Expeditionary Advisor Group, ANA is slated to receive a total of 20 C-27As, beginning in November. An Alenia NA release noted that the company will deliver the first aircraft this month and begin training USAF advisors in Afghanistan in their operation before the Combined Air Power Transition Force turns them over to the ANA. Deliveries are expected to continue through 2011. Select ANA pilots have been undergoing English language training in San Antonio, where they also will undergo an instrument flight rules course. USAF advisors then will indoctrinate them in the C-27A. Other Afghan airmen also recently completed a basic loadmaster course.
One trailblazer will commemorate another, as former Air Force test pilot, astronaut candidate, and sculptor Ed Dwight has been selected to create a statue of the Air Force’s first Black four-star general, the General Daniel "Chappie" James, Jr. Memorial Foundation announced Sept. 17.