Who attended Flight School with the U.S. Army
Students came from the around the world to learn to fly by the U.S. Army. The United States Army has a long history of training anyone who would serve the interests of the United States and their mission. Besides training Americans, they trained foreign students from Allied nations. These young people came to our country and struggled to learn to fly, their understanding and use of our language was a hindrance to them and most did accomplished their mission to help their own governments. No matter where you came from or how to arrived at the doorstep of the U.S. Army Flight School, you faced a new world.
Learning how to fly was an experience and learning how to fly helicopters is a career. Each person who stepped off the bus, train, plane or came by car looked forward to flying. Apprehensive, excited, scared, eager and assorted other feelings filled their minds. With baggage in hand they took their first steps in a whole new world.
The Army also performed the initial helicopter training for the United States Air Force, Marines, Navy and Coast Guard. They have provided flight training to almost every branch, agency and department of US government who needs pilots.
The Army has also provided training to States and Local governments.
Here are some of those programs:
WITH NINE OTHER MEMBERS OF THE METRO. POLICE DEPT. , WASHINGTON, D.C., WAS
DETAILED TO FT. WOLTERS, TEXAS, FROM NOVEMBER 1970 UNTIL APRIL 1971, FOR THE
PURPOSE OF LEARNING TO FLY HELICOPTERS. IT SURE BROUGHT MANY PLEASANT MEMORIES
OF FT. WOLTERS AND MINERAL WELLS, TEXAS.
WHILE AT FT. WOLTERS, WE WERE ASSIGNED TO THE SOUTHERN AIRWAYS CONTRACT SCHOOL TO THE UNITED STATES ARMY. WE WERE BILLETED AT THE BACHELOR OFFICERS' QUARTERS JUST ACROSS FROM THE OFFICERS' CLUB.
OUR INSTRUCTORS WERE ALL CIVILIAN INSTRUCTORS EMPLOYED BY SOUTHERN AIRWAYS. WE ATTENDED CLASSES AND FLEW AT THE SAME STAGE FIELDS WITH THE REGULAR WARRANT OFFICER CANDIDATES. I CAN REMEMBER SOME HUMOROUS INSTANCES WHEN SOME OF THE MEMBERS OF OUR CLASS (71 - D.C.) WERE APPROACHED BY THE WARRANT OFFICER CANDIDATES, AND THEY WOULD WONDER WHO WE WERE BECAUSE WE OBVIOUSLY WERE NOT OF THEIR AGE GROUP. OUR FLIGHT GEAR AND FLIGHT SUITS WERE THE SAME AS THEIR'S AND THEY COULDN'T FIGURE OUT WHAT WE WERE DOING THERE.
WE RECEIVED A TOTAL OF 200 FLIGHT HOURS WHILE WE WERE AT FT. WOLTERS. THE FIRST 100 HOURS WERE THE SAME AS THE WOCS, BUT THE SECOND 100 HOURS WERE TAILORED SPECIFICALLY TO OUR NEEDS.
AS I UNDERSTAND IT, WE WERE SOME OF THE FEW CIVILIANS WHO WERE TRAINED BY THE U.S. ARMY. THIS WAS BY AN AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE ARMY AND THE CITY OF WASHINGTON, D.C.
I HAVE A FEW PICTURES OF OUR GRADUATION AND OF THE MAIN WOLTERS HELIPORT THAT I WOULD BE WILLING TO SHARE WITH YOU IF INTERESTED.
THANKS AGAIN FOR HELPING ME TO RECALL THE VERY PLEASANT MEMORIES OF MY 6-MONTH STAY AT FT. WOLTERS.
METRO. POLICE, RETIRED
The Tiger Program - This was a volunteer program started in 1962. The graduates from primary helicopter school at "Camp Wolters" were then sent to Fort Sill, Oklahoma. There they received low level navigation training, mountain flying, and armed helicopter qualification. This training was conducted in OH-13 "E" models, with two skid mounted 30 cal. machine guns. Upon completing the course at Fort Sill, we returned to Camp Wolters to receive our wings and W1 bars.
Information provided by CW4 (Ret.) Raymond L. Kuss, Class 63-2WT.
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Last updated May 04, 2012