Call signs

Continuing yesterday’s theme of discussing names and labels – today I come to the issue of call signs. I might have mentioned this before in conjunction with attempting to get flights out of various locations.  It seems that it is convenient to be able to distinguish not just the flight number but who is crewing the flight. Or why they are flying, that is also a consideration. Somehow, it does not seem strange to hear “Lufthansa Flight 336” or Delta Flight 09, but hearing “Army flight 10” or Air Force Flight 22 or Contract Flight 41 just doesn’t have the same ring to it.

There are two categories of flights with which we need to be concerned: fixed wing and rotary. Surprised? No, I didn’t think so.

The classic rotary crew (for medical) is Dust-Off, the evac folks. The call signs for the non-medical helicopters can vary by job and inclination. None are particularly obscene and frankly, none of the ones down here seem to offer much in the way of imagination or entertainment.

Not so with the fixed wing. We have Dash, Nome, Grizz and Snap all of which are smaller planes hauling parts, mail and the occasional passenger. Moose and Torc do most of the long hauls and are a mix of  Air National Guard and regular Air Force. Bandage and Fever, while fixed wing should be self explanatory.

Please remember, these are call signs – not handles. They don’t belong to the pilots. Most of the time, pilots will not share their names with us ordinary mortals.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
This entry was posted in deployment, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Call signs

  1. Steve says:

    h, very entertaining, but remember (unless things have changed since the last airshow here), you can always get a pilot’s handle by just finding their plane (especially the fighters/attack types), they on the side of the fuselage.
    (wierd names…when at NAS Chase ground, we had our radio call… Seersucker followed by a number depending on whether you were base (trailer) or out on the runway. That was a mouthful when calling in… “seersucker 3 seersucker 1” try saying that fast… , the really stupid shit we remember 40+ years later)

  2. Carmen says:

    I will need to keep it quiet with Odin that there is a Task Force Odin. It will go to his head for sure, and there’s not much space there.

  3. Barbara says:

    What would they call a group of therapists they hauled around regularly?

    Shrink Haul
    Mind Crew
    Wizards (Marines call us wizards)
    Flying Nuts (probably referring to us and our patients)

  4. Pat says:

    ROLFMAO!! I had to share the names here at work. 🙂 Very funny. For some odd reason, this brings to mind Santa’s reindeer (Dasher & Dancer, Prancer & Vixen … ).

  5. Berg says:

    What I find interesting is that the AF CSAR folks are using Pedro as a call sign but for the last40 odd years, we have been “Jolly” after the Jolly Green Giants that we flew from Viet Nam through today. The only exception was my unit which adopted and was allowed to use “Pony XX” since we were the direct descendants of the Pony Express in Viet Nam. We still use the Pony call sign today while in CONUS.

  6. Cheryl says:

    Most of the time, they are too embarrassed!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.