"I couldn't do much to keep the jet moving so I was hoping that the theory of 'big sky, little bullet' would work in my favor," she said. From shop InkedPatentPrints. An A-10 Thunderbolt II pilot, Lt. Col. Martha McSally is also the first female in the Air Force to serve as the commander of any combat aviation squadron, to include fighters and bombers. Captain Kim’s A-10 was hit over Baghdad during a close air support mission on Apr. The plane began flying missions in the 1970s and A-10s are still flying support for American troops throughout the world. From F-4 Phantom to A-10 Warthog: Memoirs of a Cold War Fighter Pilot. "It was my last chance to try and recover the aircraft or I would be riding a parachute down into central Baghdad," she said. The FAC ultimately turned out to be a member of the captain's squadron. Niloofar Rahmani. She then ran several emergency checklists and knew she had a decision to make. One of those women was Colonel (then Captain) Kim Campbell, who flew an A-10 during Operation Iraqi Freedom. "I was impressed," said Lt. Col. Mike Millen, chief of the 355th Fighter Wing Commander's Action Group and an A-10 pilot. If she was “lucky” she would be held prisoner for propaganda value, tortured, probably raped, and executed. View more newsletters on our Subscriptions page. "There was no question in my mind," she said. "We put an incredible amount of trust in these guys and they do great work.". The Air Combat Command A-10C Thunderbolt II Demonstration Team, stationed out of Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Arizona, brings the aircraft to air shows around the country to showcase the unique combat capabilities of the A-10 "Warthog." The A-10 can survive direct hits from armor-piercing and … Not wanting to eject over Baghdad, the two-ship maneuvered south to get out of the city. Stacie N. 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Her hydraulics were out. During the time of this incident, Colonel Millen was the chief of safety for the 332nd Air Expeditionary Wing. Right in your inbox. The Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II is a single-seat, twin turbofan engine, straight wing jet aircraft developed by Fairchild-Republic for the United States Air Force (USAF). The fighting lasted for several hours through the night, marked with continuous gun battles and heavy bombardments. "The first role of women as military flyers was during World War II as Women Airforce Service Pilots, an organization disbanded after the war," Colonel McSally said. Regarded as one of the best A-10 pilots of all time, even he describ She later went on to fly combat missions in Afghanistan. ", Major Campbell was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. It wasn’t acceptable publicly to have scantily clad women painted on the side of the aircraft. The major also explained that the next day she was returned to flying, and in fact supported a search and rescue mission to help find a downed A-10 pilot near Baghdad. Campbell was interviewed later and said: “The jet was performing exceptionally well. I knew that the search and rescue alert crews were there for me the day before and I was going to do the same for this pilot. (Courtesy photo) "In my mind, the only thing that I could think about was that I had a job to do. Anti-aircraft artillery fired at the jets from every direction. That hasn’t stopped the U.S. Air Force from trying. There was a loud bang. One of those women was Colonel (then Captain) Kim Campbell, who flew an A-10 during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Kim Campbell, an A-10 Thunderbolt II pilot deployed with the 332nd Air Expeditionary Wing, surveys the battle damage to her airplane. The A-10 rolled to its left and headed downward. After realizing both of her hydraulics systems were impaired, Major Campbell said she had to put the jet into manual reversion, as the back-up system. "Amazingly we made it out of Baghdad and above the clouds with no further battle damage.". Verify your free subscription by following the instructions in the email sent to: The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds performed a flyover at Walt Disney World on Thursday in honor of fallen warriors... A major milestone for one of the last living Tuskegee Airmen. She is the first female fixed-wing Air Force aviator in Afghanistan’s history and the first female pilot in the Afghan Air Force. The jet rolled violently left and pointed at Baghdad and it wasn't responding to the captain's control inputs. Pilots and c... Capt. As she approached the base, the crash recovery team was waiting for her, along with the rescue helicopters in case she had to eject. 130110-f-oc707-003 Female Fighter Pilot Maj. Olivia Elliott completes preflight checks of her A-10 Thunderbolt II.jpg 1,526 × 2,100; 1.57 MB 130110-f-oc707-006 Female Fighter Pilot Maj. Olivia Elliott climbs into her A-10 Thunderbolt II.jpg 1,476 × 2,100; 2.53 MB "I never really had time to think about the fact that I was going back to Baghdad where just the day before I had escaped a possible shoot down," she said. The A-10 can carry a variety of weapons, but its most famous armament is the 30mm cannon which it carries in its nose. The Warthog is even made by a commercial descendant of the Republic Aviation Company, Fairchild Republic. But the Warthog now has a somewhat sleeker image, thanks to Swain. Pilots who have flown the Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II in combat will tell you, gratefully, that the airplane is tough to shoot down. Landing the plane might have been the hardest part. Due to the design of the A-10, Major Campbell said she couldn't see the damage to her jet, even with the use of her cockpit mirrors. Neither alternative had any positives. An A-10 Thunderbolt II attack aircraft fires a rotary cannon during a training exercise on the Nevada Test and Training Range July 19, 2017. While the combat pilots of WWII were men, A-10s and other combat aircraft have been flown by women for some time now. ... Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II: 1972 to date (all marks) (Owners' Workshop Manual) ... A Female Fighter Pilot's Story of Developing Strength. Then Capt. Fortunately, she was able to safely land the jet and stop it, using the emergency procedure for alternate breaking. Like its historical predecessor, the Republic P-47 Thunderbolt of WWII (nicknamed the “Jug”), the A-10 can take a lot of punishment. "We could see the Iraqi troops firing RPGs, or rocket propelled grenades, into our guys," she said. She said that manual reversion is a system of cranks and cables that allow the pilot to fly the aircraft under mechanical control. Once over the target area, they descended below the clouds to positively identify the friendly troops and the enemy's location. Get the latest on pay updates, benefit changes and award-winning military content. Chuck Yeager, Pilot Who Broke the Sound Barrier, Dead at 97. For her efforts, Captain Campbell was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. "It's what any A-10 attack pilot would do in response to a troops-in-contact situation. "Kim landed that jet with no hydraulics better than I land the A-10 every day with all systems operational.". Prior to 2010, she was a war fighter, completing … The Warthog’s tail was struck by a missile, impairing both hydraulic systems and sending it spiraling towards the city of Baghdad. "As a woman, I have always felt I needed to work that much harder to make my mark and it makes me proud to know that if there was ever a mark to be made, Major Campbell is living proof.". When she returned to base, the captain and her flight crew took a good look at her plane. "Major Campbell's story was nothing short of phenomenal," said 2nd Lt. Sandy Spoon, chief of force management operations, 355th Force Support Squadron. Watch this A-10 pilot pull off a ballsy landing without landing gear or canopy. This is when the pilot's flight training kicked in and she was able to react quickly. In the space of one day during the first Gulf War, A-10s destroyed over 20 Iraqi tanks. The A-10 is the Air Force's premier close air support aircraft, providing invaluable protection to troops on the ground. Gen Glen VanHerck, the Commander, North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command and Gen James Dickinson, the... Rosa Parks monument ceremony at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, 01 December 2020. An Air Force investigation has found that a pilot … Hundreds of shrapnel holes dotted the air-frame, and large chunks of the stabilizer were missing. "It provided everyone, not just females, a small glimpse of the sheer awesomeness the A-10 provides at the warfront. The A-10, for all of its brute strength, is not the most graceful machine on the planet. This weapon fires a depleted uranium shell and can open most tanks like a can opener. In WWII, the P-47 frequently came home with big chunks taken out of its tail, damage to its wings, and numerous bullet holes in its fuselage. That's our job; to bring fire down on the enemy when our Army and Marine brothers and sisters request our assistance.". "We were originally tasked to target some Iraqi tanks and vehicles in the city that were acting as a command post, but on the way to the target area we received a call from the ground forward air controller or FAC, saying they were taking fire and needed immediate assistance.". 1st Air Force female pilot in combat reflects on career DAVIS-MONTHAN AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. (AFPN) -- During a change of command ceremony July 19, Lt. Col. Martha McSally took command of the 354th Fighter Squadron, the only operational A-10 Thunderbolt II fighter squadron here. On April 7, 2003, Campbell was flying in support of troops on the ground and looking for opportunistic targets, such as the many AAA anti-aircraft batteries the Iraqis had in the city. It was the first time Army has shutout Navy since 1969. The Pilot's Just As Tough As The Plane. Her flight lead flew closely beside her and performed an initial battle damage check. Luckily, the jet responded and started climbing out and away from Baghdad. In what the Air Force said was a first in the plane’s 15-year history, an A-10 … After my unpleasant experiences from A-10s in Afghanistan,I tend to believe that A-10 pilots is chosen from people that failed the eye tests for a car drivers license…. Imagine an 18-wheel semi truck with no power steering on a rainy road, and you’ll have some idea. If she was “unlucky” she would be mobbed at the scene and torn apart. The A-10 Thunderbolt II is really the only true aircraft built solely for Close Air Support (CAS) in the U.S. military. Air Force Pilot Landed Damaged A-10 Using Only 'Cranks and Cables', By USAF Pilot Kim Campbell looks at her damaged A-10 Warthog which she landed at her base after a mission over Baghdad in 2003. After she landed, Major Campbell said her jet became the center of attention, as everyone was eager to see the damage, including her two crew chiefs. History of the A-10 Thunderbolt II. 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"From a female perspective, I found myself walking away from the presentation extremely empowered, not only from her words, but from her actions amidst extreme adversity," she said. As part of her presentation, Major Campbell, a 1997 graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, showed the luncheon crowd photographs of the jet's damage. Both planes were sturdily made, to say the least. The American A-10 is one tough plane. A year and a half later, Major Campbell deployed again, in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. The A-10 Thunderbolt, or “Warthog,” as it is affectionately known by everyone from pilots to ground troops, was the first U.S. Air Force aircraft purpose-built as a ground attack aircraft. DAVIS-MONTHAN AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. (AFNS) -- Maj. Kim Campbell, an A-10 Thunderbolt II pilot here, shared her story with Women's History Month luncheon guests about a mission in which her A-10 was hit by enemy fire over Baghdad. "I knew I had been hit by enemy fire.". Capt. by Steven K Ladd | Oct 26, 2020. List of Top 10 Best Female Fighter Pilots 10. This medal is awarded in support of operations by "heroism or extraordinary achievement while participating in an aerial flight.". 130110-f-oc707-006 Female Fighter Pilot Maj. Olivia Elliott climbs into her A-10 Thunderbolt II.jpg 1,476 × 2,100; 2.53 MB 130313-F-HJ547-200 USAF Female F-16 Fighter Pilot … The two-ship formation of A-10s then made several passes over the enemy location, employing 30 mm bullets and high explosive rockets. Tags: U.S. Air Force A-10 Warthog Close Air Support F-35 Drone Now Is Not the Time to Get Rid of the A-10 Warthog … You can watch the exact moment when an A-10 Thunderbolt II pilot successfully landed his … As she was about to return home, Campbell felt and heard her aircraft get hit. Readmore: A-10 Women Pilot “Killer Chick” Kim Campbell Successfully landed back a damaged A-10 Warthog The A-10A single-seat variant was the only version produced, though one pre-production airframe was modified into the YA-10B twin-seat prototype to … "It was definitely a high threat situation, but within minutes my flight lead was employing his 30 mm Gatling gun on the enemy location.". When planning a mission, it's crucial to have accurate information on as many variables as possible, and the weather is one... © Copyright 2020 Air Force Print News. 13,065 pilots = 20% (3.97 percent are women so that gives you roughly 16% chance of being a pilot) So if you beat the odds and become one of the 16% that are male pilots you would have to further beat the odds: Active force, A-10, 72 and OA-10, 72 = 144 A-10/OA-10's on active duty "I am incredibly thankful to those who designed and built the A-10 as well as the maintainers who did their part to make sure that jet could fly under any circumstances, even after extensive battle damage," said Major Campbell. Air University and Maxwell Air Force... Several teams carry out Air Force Special Tactics' primary functions, including Combat Control, Pararescue, Special... Air Force Pararescue Jumpers train hard to evacuate injured or suppressed servicemembers from any environment. Kim Campbell, an A-10 Thunderbolt II pilot deployed with the 332nd Air Expeditionary Wing, surveys the battle damage to her airplane. She faced a struggle to get the plane back home manually. “The A-10, most definitely, is like first love,” Sherer, who now spends most of his time in T-38s as a pilot instructor trainer at Randolph Air Force Base in Texas, told Task & Purpose. So, Campbell flew her Warthog under what is known as “manual reversion,” meaning that all of the hydraulics which made flying the plane so much easier were out. All rights reserved. At least nine fatal crashes involving F-16 Viper fighter jets and one involving an A-10 Warthog ground attack jet have been blamed directly on male pilots fumbling with piddle paks. Many other newer aircraft and even older aircraft are being charged with executing multi-role missions. Brrrrrt. Its official name is “Thunderbolt II,” but its nickname is “Warthog.” This plane has been scheduled for decommissioning several times, and each time members of the Defense Department and the branches of the military which fly it have come to its aid. Martha McSally, a Republican and freshman Senator out of Arizona, wasn’t always a lawmaker. The Warthog is tough in another way. 5.0 out of 5 stars 22. Also read: This Warthog pilot will receive the Silver Star 14 years after saving troops in battle. Here is the list of 10 best female Fighter Pilots who are dared to be sky warrior as modern jet fighter pilot. She has amassed 375 combat hours during her career. "Both of my crew chiefs did tremendous work on that jet and it performed better than I ever could have expected," Major Campbell said. DAVIS-MONTHAN AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. (AFNS) -- Maj. Kim Campbell, an A-10 Thunderbolt II pilot here, shared her story with Women's History Month luncheon guests about a … While deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, then Captain Campbell and her flight lead were flying over downtown Baghdad during a close air support mission April 7, 2003. "I could stay with the jet and try to land it or get to friendly territory and eject," she said. Captain Campbell knew one thing: she did not want to crash land or bail out over Baghdad. 5 out of 5 stars (423) 423 reviews U.S. government agencies were ordered to scour their networks for malware and disconnect potentially compromised servers. "Yes, there was risk involved, but these guys on the ground needed our help," Major Campbell said. The other thing the planes have in common is that their pilots are tough. He told her she had hundreds of small holes in the fuselage and tail section on the right side as well as a football sized hole on the right horizontal stabilizer. With several positive factors on her side at that moment, such as the jet responding well and an experienced flight lead on her wing providing support, Major Campbell said she was confident she could get the jet back safely to her deployed home at base in Southwest Asia, nearly an hour away by flight. On February 6th, 1991, Captain Paul "JP" Johnson took off in his A-10 Thunderbolt II as he did dozens of times before. Campbell had to react quickly. It is commonly referred to by the nicknames "Warthog" or "Hog", although the A-10's official name comes from the Republic P-47 Thunderbolt, a World War II fighter-bomber effective at attacking ground targets. by Priscilla Giddings | … Her A-10 was hit over Baghdad during a close air support mission April 7. While the combat pilots of WWII were men, A-10s and other combat aircraft have been flown by women for some time now. This almost unbelievable story comes to us from Operation Desert Storm. Martha McSally stands with her A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft in this undated photo. Capt. A-10 Warthog Pilots Reveals What It Is Like to Fly Into Battle. But of course,I might be wrong. One engine was chewed up, as was the hydraulic system. Elizabeth Eastman prepares for a routine training flight in an A-10 Thunderbolt II February 26, 2019, at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea. She attempted to get her plane back under control by punching in commands on her flight computer, but it did not respond. After her last rocket pass, the captain was maneuvering off target when she felt and heard a large explosion at the back of the aircraft. April 26, 2019 Topic: Security Blog Brand: The Buzz. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Both planes were designed to be “tank busters” and carried the armament to do a great deal of damage. Those who fly will understand just how difficult landing that plane was. Major Campbell also drove home the realization that everything we are able to do is because someone else has done his or her job right. The A-10’s pilot is encased in a titanium protected cockpit, its engines are located above the fuselage in the tail, it has a number of built-in redundancies in case of damage (for instance, its hydraulic system), and it gives less of a heat signature than similar planes would. 7, 2003. Both the House and Senate passed the measure by margins large enough to override a potential veto from the president. I had no doubt in my mind I was going to land that airplane… When you lose all the hydraulics, you don’t have speed brakes, you don’t have brakes, and you don’t have steering.” The Air Force Chief of Staff later said: “She’s one of the few pilots who ever landed the A-10 in the manual mode.”. Throw in people shooting at you from the ground, and you’ll have a better idea of what Captain Campbell was up against. 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