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Alouette 3 Retires.

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  • Alouette 3 Retires.

    Tomorrow after 44 years amazing service, in addition to the numerous lives saved, the Sturdy tadpole like sight will soon pass from our skies, at least those wearing the Roundel.

    A ceremony will be held tomorrow to mark the withdrawal from service of the Air Corps Aerospatiale Alouette III, some of which first entered service in 1963. Expected to attent is Retired GOC Air Corps Brig Gen Mc Mahon, who was among the first pilots to bring the Aircraft home from france.

    I think all will agree that these aircraft were possibly the best investment the Defence forces ever made.

    Stand Down of the Alouette
    19th September 2007

    542 lives saved. 1,717 Search & Rescue Missions. 2,882 Air Ambulance Missions. 77,000 flying hours. 44 years service.

    Widely considered to be one of the best helicopters ever produced in its class, the Air Corps will “stand-down” the Alouette III following 44 years service on Friday 21st September 2007. Deputy Chief of Staff, Major General Pat Nash accompanied by General Officer Commanding Air Corps, Brigadier General Ralph James will attend the ceremony at Casement Aerodrome, Baldonnel at 2.00 pm.

    Purchased in 1963 as an “Air and Sea Rescue” helicopter the French made machine had an immediate impact. 542 people owe their lives to the skill of the rescue crews and helicopter’s versatility, in over 1,700 missions. 14 members of the Air Corps’ were decorated for outstanding bravery during some of these rescues. In addition, over 2,882 Air Ambulance missions were completed. The helicopter fleet was also deployed with the army on operations, particularly in border areas.

    The Air Corps now operates a completely new fleet of Eurocopter EC135 and Agusta/Westland AW139 helicopters following this “stand-down” and the 2006 retirement of the Dauphin helicopter.

    Fittingly the pilot who flew the first Alouette to Casement Aerodrome in 1963, Brigadier General Brian McMahon (retired), will be in attendance with over 500 guests. Former technicians and aircrew and a representation from the rescue community will then be treated to a flying display by the aircraft. At 3.00 pm, engines roaring, rotors spinning, the Alouettes will lift into the blue one last time so ending a glorious chapter of Air Corps history!

    Members of the media are invited to this photocall as follows:

    Day/Date: Friday 21st September 2007.
    Location: Casement Aerodrome, Baldonnel, Co. Dublin.
    Time: 2:00 pm

    Last edited by Goldie fish; 20 September 2007, 22:54.


    Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

  • #2
    HOw many are still flying

    and how many are we keeping

    what a great machine

    but at this stage they are a bot like triggers broom
    Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
    Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
    The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere***
    The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
    The best lack all conviction, while the worst
    Are full of passionate intensity.

    Comment


    • #3
      It is hoped that there will be a formation of 6 flying on friday the 21st ........
      "We will hold out until our last bullet is spent. Could do with some whiskey"
      Radio transmission, siege of Jadotville DR Congo. September 1961.
      Illegitimi non carborundum

      Comment


      • #4
        keeping one

        Are the AC planning on keeping at least one of the Alouettes as a display/museum piece or donating one to an appropriate museum. it would be a shame not to keep one after all these years and service.

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        • #5
          Hi all
          The "ditched" one will be retained in the Museum.The rest will probably go out for sale...
          regards
          GttC

          Comment


          • #6
            The noisy bastards have been buzzing my house all morning!!!

            You're even dumber than I tell people

            You might have been infected but you never were a bore

            Comment


            • #7
              It even got a mention on the Ray D'arsey show, which was followed by a typically ignorant response from the Grey haired midget.


              Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Goldie fish View Post
                ... which was followed by a typically ignorant response from the Grey haired midget.
                Which was?
                Meh.

                Comment


                • #9
                  "Do you feel safer now that they are after being replaced"


                  Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Tool.
                    Meh.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Was lucky enough to look up this afternoon on my way home and saw them. Was a lovely sight and I'm sure there are many more people that are sad to see them go.
                      Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent.
                      Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent.
                      Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil?
                      Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?

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                      • #12
                        It was a great occasion today. Six AIIIs and three A139s in the air in formation. Great formation flying and low key ceremonial all creating a great sense of occasion. At the very end all six remaining AIIIs flew line astern on to the apron -- and then 'reversed' in to their landing locations -- creating a crescendo of sound as the A139s remained opposite on the apron with blades turning. The last 'paraffin' whiff from the AIII engines was as evocative a signature of any from the era of the Alouette. As well as the high profile rescue stuff over the years the contribution of the AIIIs to border and general security operations is a proud entry in the record of the Air Corps in the later half of the twentieth century. Au revoir AIII.

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                        • #13
                          So long old friend

                          So long.


                          Taken by me at Ops on the day of the Salthill Airshow 07.





                          [Mod: Merged. There was already a thread on this topic. Kindly engage brain before posting]
                          Last edited by Barry; 21 September 2007, 23:40.

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                          • #14
                            I have to say the sound was unique. The EC135 passes over work quite regularly and there is nothing as distinctive about it.


                            Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              A yes
                              Alouette noise...a mix of industrial fire-alarm(ding-a-ling-a-ling) and industrial hoover(OOOOOOOOHHHH).You could hear them from miles away...they were like a big greenhouse to fly in.Fabulous visibility.Someday(probably after the participants are dead)the real Alouette stories will emerge....let's hope they get as much utility out of the new toys as they did out of the Alouettes.
                              regards
                              GttC

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