Aircraft mentioned in this article :
“As much as this is a 50th anniversary about the Mighty Huey, the real stars are the men and women who have called this squadron their own. For five decades they’ve provided realistic Survival training and risk mitigation, allowing the 336th Training Group to provide the worldwide benchmark in Survival training for literally hundreds of thousands of American Airmen,” said Lt. Col. Matt Doberman, the previous 36th RQS commander. “And, as if the squadron’s role in national defense weren’t enough, along the way we have saved 705 people. Our log books go back through 50 years of fire evacuations, car accident victims, lost and hypothermic hikers and infants medevac’d to Sacred Heart.”
The stories of saved lives in the community live on through proud members of the squadron.
“On Jan. 15, 1971, an Airman driving to Fairchild, nearly 40 minutes from base, fell ill and needed immediate gallbladder surgery,” Golembiewski said. “The weather was so bad they couldn’t get any planes into the airport or ambulances on the ground to pick him up, so Airmen from the 24th [Detachment] flew there and brought him back to Fairchild for surgery.”
Advances in technology and innovations, like the forward-looking infrared and modern global positioning system, have boosted the capabilities of the RQS and helped them save lives.
Training is conducted year-round at Fairchild and at the School’s field location in the Colville National Forest, about 60 miles north of Fairchild. Flight operations include live rescue hoist training, para-drop demonstrations, and combat rescue procedures training for students in the basic Combat Survival Course. An aircraft and crew are on stand-by 24 hours a day, six days a week to provide medical evacuation coverage.
The 36th RQS has had lasting impacts on the Department of Defense and the Pacific Northwest community by aiding SERE Airmen to become proficient at survival, evasion, resistance and escape, and ensuring family members get home to their families.
50 years old UH-1N 69-6648 first 36th squadron helicopter with nearly 20,000 flight hours
36th squadron helicopters flyby
Bell UH-1N 69-6648 ( US Air Force )