Captain to Ensign

UHBlackhawk

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The Army will often have pilots go to the Coast Guard at a reduced rank.
My wife went from an O-4 to a 2LT when she went to medical school.
I went from O-4 to CW2 when I went into the National Guard.
 

AF6872

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Good friend of ours went Navy after the Academy and SWO. Wanted to fly big time. Went Coast Guard with a lateral transfer so he could Fly. It is not unheard of. He was five and dive but took a great reduction in rank for the platform he wanted.
 

LineInTheSand

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Good friend of ours went Navy after the Academy and SWO. Wanted to fly big time. Went Coast Guard with a lateral transfer so he could Fly. It is not unheard of. He was five and dive but took a great reduction in rank for the platform he wanted.

Direct Commission Aviators or DCAs.

Often O-4 or O-3 to O-1. They go through a shorter OCS-like program to familiarize them with the Coast Guard.
 

UHBlackhawk

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But...the Guard
Actually, my Guard aviation unit had much more experience than any unit I'd been in on active duty, to include the 160th (though I would not put it quite in the same boat as the 160th as far as mission execution). Heck, several of us had been in the 160th. Most of us were airline pilots, corporate pilots, police helicopter pilots, or EMS pilots who flew for a living. One of our pilots had over 20,000 hours of just helicopter time. Unlike most active duty units, we could be picky about who we took and regularly turned away pilots who did not pass the interview process.
The enlisted side was the same. While we had a smattering of new crew chiefs, most were prior active duty and we still had some Viet Nam vets both on the enlisted and the pilot side. It was not unusual to have an E-5 with 20 years experience. In addition, by the time we were shipped off to war most of us had been flying together for years. We ran rings around the active duty units when deployed. Never dropped a mission for maintenance. We did not have one class A; the one class B we had was caused by Depot (an engine they gave us was defective and came apart permitting hot exhaust gas to escape and melt an I-beam); no class C's.
 

scoutpilot

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Actually, my Guard aviation unit had much more experience than any unit I'd been in on active duty, to include the 160th (though I would not put it quite in the same boat as the 160th as far as mission execution).

Phew...glad the 160th just made the cut above your Guard unit in terms of capabilities. :rolleyes:

Heck, several of us had been in the 160th.

Is that so...

In addition, by the time we were shipped off to war most of us had been flying together for years. We ran rings around the active duty units when deployed.

Said every Guard unit ever. Every guard unit. Ever. Surely you know "we were better than active duty" is a running joke. I can only speak from having worked with 5 different ARNG aviation battalions. Each was sorely lacking in METL capabilities and basic soldiering. Perhaps yours was the unit I needed to see.

Never dropped a mission for maintenance. We did not have one class A; the one class B we had was caused by Depot (an engine they gave us was defective and came apart permitting hot exhaust gas to escape and melt an I-beam); no class C's.

A bit of an odd metric, but good to hear.
 

UHBlackhawk

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Phew...glad the 160th just made the cut above your Guard unit in terms of capabilities. :rolleyes:



Is that so...



Said every Guard unit ever. Every guard unit. Ever. Surely you know "we were better than active duty" is a running joke. I can only speak from having worked with 5 different ARNG aviation battalions. Each was sorely lacking in METL capabilities and basic soldiering. Perhaps yours was the unit I needed to see.



A bit of an odd metric, but good to hear.

I actually served on active duty, to include the 160th so I was around the block a few times before I served in the Guard and actually got to see both sides first hand. My perspective was from one who served throughout the world active duty in numerous units, as well as the Guard. In addition my wife was initially assigned to a Reserve unit in the Gulf War that got hit by a Scud and lost a number of soldiers.
If you go to Arlington you will find more than one tombstone earned by a member of the Guard you so disparage, in just about every war to include the one going on now. I'm sure the families of those who gave all would like to hear from some anonymous dude online how their loved ones were second rate.
Grow up. It's one thing to have a little rivalry. It's another to slam soldiers who you don't even know, have never served with, and are putting their lives on the line.
 
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Maplerock

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I actually served on active duty, to include the 160th so I was around the block a few times before I served in the Guard and actually got to see both sides first hand. My perspective was from one who served throughout the world active duty in numerous units, as well as the Guard. In addition my wife was initially assigned to a Reserve unit in the Gulf War that got hit by a Scud and lost a number of soldiers.
If you go to Arlington you will find more than one tombstone earned by a member of the Guard you so disparage, in just about every war to include the one going on now. I'm sure the families of those who gave all would like to hear from some anonymous dude online how their loved ones were second rate.
Grow up. It's one thing to have a little rivalry. It's another to slam soldiers who you don't even know, have never served with, and are putting their lives on the line.

Well said. Thank you for your service. Much appreciated. Some might heed the words of Gordon B. Hinckley:

"I am suggesting that as we go through life, we 'accentuate the positive.' I am asking that we look a little deeper for the good, that we still our voices of insult and sarcasm, that we more generously compliment and endorse virtue and effort."
 

scoutpilot

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I actually served on active duty, to include the 160th so I was around the block a few times before I served in the Guard and actually got to see both sides first hand. My perspective was from one who served throughout the world active duty in numerous units, as well as the Guard. In addition my wife was initially assigned to a Reserve unit in the Gulf War that got hit by a Scud and lost a number of soldiers.
If you go to Arlington you will find more than one tombstone earned by a member of the Guard you so disparage, in just about every war to include the one going on now. I'm sure the families of those who gave all would like to hear from some anonymous dude online how their loved ones were second rate.
Grow up. It's one thing to have a little rivalry. It's another to slam soldiers who you don't even know, have never served with, and are putting their lives on the line.

Whoa! Talk about making a random left turn at the RP. I rolled my eyes at your suggestion that your Guard unit was just a shade behind the 160th (in which you claim to have served...another subject entirely) and you launch into a sermon about tombstones? Odd, and a bit beyond the pale. No one is denigrating anyone in Arlington or any other cemetery.

I'm talking about the capabilities of units that are by design and by nature part-time and staffed by part-timers with other professional interests, versus active duty units whose sole professional purpose is warfighting. If youre trying to make a serious argument that the former is the equal of the latter, then you're arguing that the profession of arms can be pursued on a part-time basis and that the standing Army should not exist. I made a lighthearted joke and now it's off to the races.

I hope I'm misreading and that you weren't insinuating that you alone have the perspective of having served around the world with active and reserve units.
 
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EDelahanty

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Well said. Thank you for your service. Much appreciated. Some might heed the words of Gordon B. Hinckley:

"I am suggesting that as we go through life, we 'accentuate the positive.' I am asking that we look a little deeper for the good, that we still our voices of insult and sarcasm, that we more generously compliment and endorse virtue and effort."

I wonder if Brer Hinckley was aware he was quoting Father Divine, whose sermon inspired Johnny Mercer's lyrics. Ac Cent Tchu-Ate the Positive was hugely popular when it came out during World War 2. I prefer Ella Fitzgerald's version over the hammy treatment by Bing Crosby and the Andrews Sisters.

Hard to believe there were as many as 14 a-holes who went out of their way to say they didn't like it.


Apologies for de-railing the thread
 

UHBlackhawk

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Whoa! Talk about making a random left turn at the RP. I rolled my eyes at your suggestion that your Guard unit was just a shade behind the 160th (in which you claim to have served...another subject entirely) and you launch into a sermon about tombstones? Odd, and a bit beyond the pale. No one is denigrating anyone in Arlington or any other cemetery.

I'm talking about the capabilities of units that are by design and by nature part-time and staffed by part-timers with other professional interests, versus active duty units whose sole professional purpose is warfighting. If youre trying to make a serious argument that the former is the equal of the latter, then you're arguing that the profession of arms can be pursued on a part-time basis and that the standing Army should not exist. I made a lighthearted joke and now it's off to the races.

I hope I'm misreading and that you weren't insinuating that you alone have the perspective of having served around the world with active and reserve units.

Read what I wrote again. Here, I will quote it for you.
"...my Guard aviation unit had much more experience than any unit I'd been in on active duty, to include the 160th..."
My point was the experience level, not necessarily the ability to execute at the 160th level which I admitted they could not do. I discussed the experience level found in the Guard unit where I served. All but one WO served several active duty assignments. Most of the "part timers" flew in their day jobs and had far more hours and a broader experience base than the average active duty pilot. As a part timer I met my FAC 1 minimums (then some as an IP), yet also flew in my "day job" about 700-900 hours/year. Granted, the flying was different than the normal air assault mission, but it still gave us a breadth of experience that would not be found in most active duty units. It also gave us an outside perspective that often gave us insights to solutions active duty units wouldn't see. Finally, I would also add that you are showing your ignorance of the Guard/Reserve system. Many of them are actually full timers; the unit is fleshed out by the "part timers".
Granted, aviation is somewhat different than something such as infantry; but it is similar to other technical fields where many times the Guard/Reservists have more and broader experience than their active duty peers. I've seen this in medicine and communications as well.
It's not that the Guard/Reserve can replace active duty soldiers. After all, it was tough enough after 9/11 for "part timers" to give up their real jobs and deploy every 18-24 months as was happening for a while. In addition, since we are normally older the nonstop combat missions can take a toll on the body. Combat is a young person's "game". I learned the meaning of chronic fatigue flying 14 days in a row with chicken plate. The lone WO1 and the young LT's we had seemed to handle it much better. But we can and did do the mission.
While you may view your "joke" as "lighthearted", it's been in line with your non stop "scouts out" FEBA that you were fed in flight school as a youngster and can't seem to realize was just that- FEBA. In addition, as someone who has served with those you insulted with you "joke" I find it demeaning to their sacrifice.
Last, if you wish I will PM you a copy of my ORB along with some references as to my service. I know it is easy to be an internet Ranger. I won't and never have pretended I did anything grandiose or heroic either on active duty or in the Guard, but I have also never lied about my service. If it will help "Commander you know who" pinned on my O-4 while I was deployed to Central America.
 
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scoutpilot

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Read what I wrote again. Here, I will quote it for you.
"...my Guard aviation unit had much more experience than any unit I'd been in on active duty, to include the 160th..."
My point was the experience level, not necessarily the ability to execute at the 160th level which I admitted they could not do. I discussed the experience level found in the Guard unit where I served. All but one WO served several active duty assignments. Most of the "part timers" flew in their day jobs and had far more hours and a broader experience base than the average active duty pilot. As a part timer I met my FAC 1 minimums (then some as an IP), yet also flew in my "day job" about 700-900 hours/year. Granted, the flying was different than the normal air assault mission, but it still gave us a breadth of experience that would not be found in most active duty units. It also gave us an outside perspective that often gave us insights to solutions active duty units wouldn't see. Finally, I would also add that you are showing your ignorance of the Guard/Reserve system. Many of them are actually full timers; the unit is fleshed out by the "part timers".
Granted, aviation is somewhat different than something such as infantry; but it is similar to other technical fields where many times the Guard/Reservists have more and broader experience than their active duty peers. I've seen this in medicine and communications as well.
It's not that the Guard/Reserve can replace active duty soldiers. After all, it was tough enough after 9/11 for "part timers" to give up their real jobs and deploy every 18-24 months as was happening for a while. In addition, since we are normally older the nonstop combat missions can take a toll on the body. Combat is a young person's "game". I learned the meaning of chronic fatigue flying 14 days in a row with chicken plate. The lone WO1 and the young LT's we had seemed to handle it much better. But we can and did do the mission.
While you may view your "joke" as "lighthearted", it's been in line with your non stop "scouts out" FEBA that you were fed in flight school as a youngster and can't seem to realize was just that- FEBA. In addition, as someone who has served with those you insulted with you "joke" I find it demeaning to their sacrifice.
Last, if you wish I will PM you a copy of my ORB along with some references as to my service. I know it is easy to be an internet Ranger. I won't and never have pretended I did anything grandiose or heroic either on active duty or in the Guard, but I have also never lied about my service. If it will help "Commander you know who" pinned on my O-4 while I was deployed to Central America.

Read what you wrote again. Here, I will quote it for you. "though I would not put it quite in the same boat as the 160th as far as mission execution." Perhaps you were using "quite" in a tongue-in-cheek fashion?

I'm aware of the whole mishmash of AGR, Federal Technicians, and true part-timers in Guard aviation. Having had the Guard as DS to us across 5 different battalions (Idaho was the best, FYI), we're well versed in the many-headed beast of the Guard, and I was party a rather heated discussion with MG Lundy wherein a friend and NG officer tried to make him understand that "these guys didn't join the Army, they joined the Guard."

Granted, the flying was different than the normal air assault mission, but it still gave us a breadth of experience that would not be found in most active duty units.

That's the problem right there...people confuse similar experience with applicable experience. Many Guard pilots have other flying jobs, and that's nice. You get really good at the national airspace system and part 91 rules when you fly a commercial gig. You got really good at flying the narrow, rote mission tasks your commercial job calls for. The rub is that most of it isn't applicable, and where Guard units fall short isn't in individual aircrew skills--it's in collective mission tasks. I have no doubt that many of the Guard pilots have personal logbooks that blow the average AD pilot's hours away...but when we're talking about planning a company air assault to a box canyon at 7000' DA or getting the 30mm on target in the mountains with a CCT talking you on in a stack with 8 rotary wing assets alone...well, flying long-line in Pennsylvania or landing to the #2 pad at Vanderbilt University Medical Center isn't going to carry the mail.

If you want to take a joke about the Guard's foibles (a long-established tradition) as a personal affront to our war dead...that's on you.
 

UHBlackhawk

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I was not using it tounge in cheek. The Guard could NOT compare to the 160th in mission execution and I was pretty clear about that.
You mistaken belief that the day to day flying outside the military has no application to military flying comes from your lack of understanding of anything outside military flying. I've seen both, and a wide variety of both.
Actually, much of the experience is compatible. Landing next to a highway to pick up a patient at night as an EMA pilot is not much different from landing next to a sheriff base on an MSR; while scout pilots may think flying instruments is not a combat task, we quickly found that was not the case. When you run into an unforecast dust storm it's all well and good to say you will land, until people start to come out with AKs. So your only other option is to punch in and do an IMC recovery to minimums. Not a big deal for an airline pilot who shoots approaches to minimums on a monthly basis.
When the Army finally let IPs teach combat maneuvers again, it was not a big deal for aerobatic pilots such as me who live and breath lift vectors and understand what happens to the weight of an aircraft when you pull a 2 G turn. Same with flying at 7000' DA. Ho hum. You do know some of the DEA pilots who also flew in the Guard did that on a daily basis in their part time job? Oh, and you do know who taught me at HAATS when I went through with the 160th? Colorado Guard pilots. I think they knew a thing or two about operating at a high DA and flying into box canyons. You do know we have them in the states? You just have to get permission to leave the range complex to see them if you are active duty. Not an issue for the Guard pilots.
As for mission execution, while we may not have been great at rock drills and a complex mission that required staff integration would have been weak at the beginning, we could brief METT-T and be off the ground on the simple bread and butter company mission that made up 99.99% of our flying far faster than most active duty units due to the years of integration we had. It was the same for Guard AH-64 units I observed over there. Very rarely did they fly more than 2 ship missions and the staff had no issues planning and executing these missions. I'm willing to bet few could tell the difference.
As for the "joke", again, as with your "Scouts out" FEBA it gets old.
BTW, MG Mike Lundy and my wife were troops commanders together... a few years ago. And the person trying to educate him was correct. We had no problem deploying and serving our country. But we left active duty and went into the Guard for a reason. If I wanted to have a 18 month home, 14 month deployed (including train up), schedule Ivwould have stayed active duty. The on/off schedule also was very trying as Guard memebers returning had to be integrated back into the work force. Once our leave was over, we needed a job.
 
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scoutpilot

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I was not using it tounge in cheek. The Guard could NOT compare to the 160th in mission execution and I was pretty clear about that.

Actually, you weren't...which is way I asked. When you say "quite" it implies that the two were close. Your statement above is finally a bit clearer.

You mistaken belief that the day to day flying outside the military has no application to military flying comes from your lack of understanding of anything outside military flying. I've seen both, and a wide variety of both.

To be fair, I never said it has no applicability.

Actually, much of the experience is compatible. Landing next to a highway to pick up a patient at night as an EMA pilot is not much different from landing next to a sheriff base on an MSR;
Correct, they're both VMC approaches to an unimproved site, which is not much different than landing at any other dust RT or confined area. All roads have wires. Having some experience with the HEMS community, the approaches a HEMS pilot shoots and the approaches you need to shoot in combat are a world apart (a reason why most of our pilots who go to HEMS end up quitting...they hate the brand of flying that corporate rules imposes on them).

while scout pilots may think flying instruments is not a combat task, we quickly found that was not the case. When you run into an unforecast dust storm it's all well and good to say you will land, until people start to come out with AKs. So your only other option is to punch in and do an IMC recovery to minimums. Not a big deal for an airline pilot who shoots approaches to minimums on a monthly basis.
Your fixation on "scout pilots" is confusing to me. Are you under the impression we couldn't fly instruments to recover to an airfield? That will be news to all of us who did it. IIMC recovery to BIAP or Marez was not uncommon (though you did learn not to trust the forecaster). It's not a big deal to any pilot who passes an instrument APART, though you're attempting to strengthen your argument by comparing a Guard UH-60 pilot to those dastardly "scout pilots" and not to active duty UH pilots, who can and do file IFR and shoot approaches regularly. It's an old trick.

When the Army finally let IPs teach combat maneuvers again, it was not a big deal for aerobatic pilots such as me who live and breath lift vectors and understand what happens to the weight of an aircraft when you pull a 2 G turn.
No one in the military flies aerobatically outside of work? That's only in the Guard? I may have to warn some folks to cease and desist...

Same with flying at 7000' DA. Ho hum.
Flying at 7000' DA and doing a simultaneous dust-landing assault to a box canyon at MGW are too different things, and I think you know that. This remark was a bit glib, even for this discussion.

Oh, and you do know who taught me at HAATS when I went through with the 160th? Colorado Guard pilots. I think they knew a thing or two about operating at a high DA and flying into box canyons. You do know we have them in the states? You just have to get permission to leave the range complex to see them if you are active duty. Not an issue for the Guard pilots.
Not an issue for those Guard pilots. Let's be careful with who we're including with our terms and definitions here. Again, this is a conflation. You're trying to meld the discussion about the applicability of civilian flying "breadth of experience" into a rundown of what the purpose-built HAATS faculty teaches. Hardly the same.

As for mission execution, while we may not have been great at rock drills and a complex mission that required staff integration would have been weak at the beginning, we could brief METT-T and be off the ground on the simple bread and butter company mission that made up 99.99% of our flying far faster than most active duty units due to the years of integration we had.
This sounds like a lot of confirmation bias I have to say. Your first remark about complex missions is the point. I don't think anyone argues that the Guard can't do simple things well. The problem is that we don't get to choose to only do the simple things. This is about more than "rock" drills.

It was the same for Guard AH-64 units I observed over there. Very rarely did they fly more than 2 ship missions and the staff had no issues planning and executing these missions. I'm willing to bet few could tell the difference.
The first time you ask them to do anything but fly, you'll absolutely know the difference. The PA Guard showed so badly at a Gunsmoke they lost their DS role, because the CCTs couldn't trust them to get rounds down quickly or hit the target. It was embarrassing for me, since one of my classmates had transitioned to that unit.

As for the "joke", again, as with your "Scouts out" FEBA it gets old.
You are very fixated on this "scouts out FEBA" thing...remembering your days in the Alpha/Chuck too fondly, I think. I haven't said either here...especially since I haven't flown the scout/attack mission in 10 years. But, I get it...Hawk pilots always did envy us in those days ;) My personal opinion is that you're reading something too much into my joke.

BTW, MG Mike Lundy and my wife were troops commanders together... a few years ago. And the person trying to educate him was correct. We had no problem deploying and serving our country. But we left active duty and went into the Guard for a reason. If I wanted to have a 18 month home, 14 month deployed (including train up), schedule Ivwould have stayed active duty. The on/off schedule also was very trying as Guard memebers returning had to be integrated back into the work force. Once our leave was over, we needed a job.
Yes, but the crux of that discussion was over the ARI plan to replace AH-64s with 60s at the state level, and the outcry from guys in those units proclaiming they'd quit the Guard if they couldn't fly the airplane they wanted. Lundy's stance was that they joined the Army, and you fly what the Army needs you to fly. My colleague's stance was that these folks didn't think they were joining the Army, but joining the Guard. It's a cultural schism that runs from top to bottom.
 

LineInTheSand

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The only helos that should be discussed on this thread are 60s and 65s..... and maybe 68s (if people remember them).
 
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