A ski-equipped Air National Guard C-130 on Thursday rescued Buzz Aldrin from the South Pole on Thursday. Aldrin was part of a private tour group to the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station when he became ill, according to the National Science Foundation. An LC-130 from the 109th Airlift Wing of the New York Air National Guard responded to fly Aldrin from the South Pole Station to McMurdo Station, where he was then taken to New Zealand for care. There were no additional details on Aldrin’s status as of Thursday afternoon. The ski-equipped LC-130s deploy to Antarctica to support the National Science Foundation by flying an “air bridge” between the remote Amundsen-Scott station to McMurdo.
U.S. Air Force F-35s and F-22s regularly deploy deep into the Pacific region from Alaska, Utah, and Hawaii. In the future, though, the head of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command would like to see the Air Force permanently station fifth-generation aircraft west of the international date line—closer to China.