The last C-130H from Fort Bragg’s 440th Airlift Wing will leave the post’s Pope Field Wednesday for the Boneyard at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson in one of the final steps before the Air Force Reserve unit is formally inactivated.
The last significant hurdle to the Air Force’s effort to shutter the unit was crossed in February when the Army’s top civilian and military leaders agreed to the plan in February. In May, the Air Force notified Congress that it would go ahead with its plan to shutter the airlift wing, reported the Fayetteville Observer. North Carolina’s congressional delegation had fought to postpone the unit’s elimination since the Air Force first proposed it as a cost-cutting measure in early 2014.
The loss of the 440th means Fort Bragg’s paratrooper units will need to rely on air crews from other bases for airborne training. The unit moved to Fort Bragg — initially Pope AFB before it was transferred to the Army — in 2007.
Other C-130s from the 440th were shifted to an Air National Guard unit in Little Rock, Ark. Today, only a few hundred of the 440th’s airmen and civilians, down from 1,200, remain at Fort Bragg.