The mechanics had maintained the helicopters when they were in theater, and Ret. Maj. Gen. Jim Myles – who is now vice president of aviation for DynCorp International and based in Huntsville – reported what those helicopters have accomplished since 2010. They have flown 8,000 hours, 38,000 people and 295,000 pounds of cargo.
"They are the backbone of modern Army aviation," Myles said of the Hueys. Myles said that being contractors such as the mechanics is a dangerous job. DynCorp has lost 67 employees in theater since 2003.
But for now, the mechanics will "shake the sand out" of the helicopters and prepare them for their next line of duty, such as fighting fires in California or supporting oil rigs in the Gulf. The work will be done in Huntsville, Myles said, "Because they just know how to get the work done."
The repair and refurbishment project is a being done via a strategic agreement with DynCorp, WestWind Technologies and Sierra Nevada.