The last aircraft with the unit, serial number 88-4401, departed from Mansfield on July 7. It is destined to become a static display exhibit at the Military Aviation Preservation Society (MAPS) Air Museum in North Canton, Ohio. Earlier this year, as C-130H operations wound down, the unit performed a final ceremonial formation flight with two Hercules on April 23. The sortie was part of a private ceremony involving associated personnel, family and friends to pay tribute to the unit’s history before it enters a new era undertaking a non-aviation-based mission.
Henceforth, the unit will become the country’s first ANG Cyber Wing as it transitions from flying the C-130H to a new mission assigned to Air Combat Command. The Hercules had served with the Ohio ANG since 1976, when the C-130B variant replaced F-100D/F Super Sabres. The older model Hercules were replaced in 1991 by C-130Hs, which in turn were replaced by C-27J Spartans in 2010. The decision to retire that latter from USAF service led to the unit re-equipping once again with the C-130H in 2013, which it continued to operate until earlier this year.