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    117 MXG moves A-26 from Warner Robin

    117 MXG moves an A-26

    Photo By Tech. Sgt. James Bentley | Members of the 117th Maintenance Group disassemble an A-26 Invader at the Museum of...... read more read more

    WARNER ROBINS, GA, UNITED STATES

    06.22.2020

    Story by Tech. Sgt. James Bentley 

    117th Air Refueling Wing

    WARNER ROBINS, Ga -- Airmen from the 117th Maintenance Group traveled to the Museum of Aviation to disassemble and relocate an A-26 Invader.

    This mission served two purposes. The Invader will be restored and put on display at Sumpter Smith National Guard Base. This also constituted the annual Crash Damage or Disabled Aircraft Recovery training for the Maintainers.

    The Invader is tied into Sumpter Smith JNGB history. The 117th Tactical Reconnaissance Group flew these aircraft from 1946 until the arrival of the RF-84F Thunderstreak in 1957.

    In 1961 the CIA recruited airmen from the 117th to support the Bay of Pigs Invasion. They were chosen for their experience with the Invader (at the time redesignated as the B-26), as the 117th had among the last Wings to operate the aircraft. Their mission was to travel to Nicaragua where they would provide training, maintenance and other support for Cuban exiles, who flew Invaders in an attempt to overthrow the regime of Fidel Castro.

    In the last day of the attack eight Americans volunteered to fly in order to relieve the exhausted Cuban pilots. Four of those airmen died: Pete Ray, Riley Shamburger, Wade Gray, and Leo Baker. American involvement in the invasion was classified until 1998.

    The tail number on this A-26 matches that of one of the aircraft used in the invasion.

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 06.22.2020
    Date Posted: 07.23.2020 17:09
    Story ID: 374341
    Location: WARNER ROBINS, GA, US 
    Hometown: BIRMINGHAM, AL, US

    Podcast Hits: 0

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