OH-58 Kiowa Warrior

The US Army 6th Cavalry Regiment’s 2nd Squadron has conducted the final flight of its OH-58 Kiowa Warrior armed reconnaissance helicopters at Wheeler Army Airfield, Hawaii, US.

A total of 18 Kiowa Warrior helicopters flew around the island and will now be retired from the active fleet of the 2-6 Cavalry Regiment, which also cased its colours for an upcoming operational deployment to the Korean Peninsula.

The single-engine helicopters, built by Bell Helicopter, have been used for observation, utility, fire support and armed reconnaissance missions.

2-6 Cavalry commander lieutenant colonel Aaron Martin said: "The Kiowa Warrior has called this island home for the past 17 years.

"It was a workhorse and continually came through day after day, year after year, and mission after mission."

"The single-engine helicopters, built by Bell Helicopter, have been used for observation, utility, fire support and armed reconnaissance missions."

Kiowa Warriors have also been delivered to Austria, Canada, the Dominican Republic, Taiwan and Saudi Arabia, and produced under licence in Australia.

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During its nine-month rotational deployment at Camp Humphreys in South Korea, the 2nd Squadron, 6th Cavalry Regiment will help local forces and South Korea to discourage aggression on the peninsula.

In a statement published by Stars and Stripes, the Eighth Army said that the squadron will replace the 6-17th Cavalry Regiment that has been providing aviation reconnaissance and security support to US and South Korean forces operating under the 2nd Combat Aviation Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division.

Martin added: "Through everyone’s hard work, we can stand here today and say we are ready to deploy and truly execute our mission."

Image: 2-6 Cavalry Regiment’s OH-58 Kiowa Warrior helicopters take off for the final flight on Wheeler Army Airfield, Hawaii, US. Photo: courtesy of Staff Sgt. Tramel S Garrett (25th ID).