RAAF Patch Sqn Royal Australian Air Force b 37 Squadron C 130 b
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RAAF Patch Sqn Royal Australian Air Force b 37 Squadron C 130 b

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  • Item #: 1P 51AS 1AAF 01SQN 2OP 0037SQ 02
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RAAF Patch 37 Squadron Royal Australian Air Force Australia C 130 Hercules Patch 1990s RAAF Richmond Embroidered on twill merrowed edge 101mm four inches diameter.

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37 Squadron reformed at RAAF Richmond in February 1966 equipped with C 130E Hercules transport aircraft and began long range missions in support of Australian forces in Vietnam including aero medical evacuations conveying wounded soldiers back to Australia via RAAF Base Butterworth Malaysia. One of the Squadrons Hercules was the first Australian strategic transport aircraft to land at Vung Tau AB Vietnam on 5 February 1967. The Squadron transported forces out of Vietnam following the Australian withdrawal from the conflict in December 1972.

As well as participating in military exercises and overseas peacekeeping commitments the Squadron Hercules supported relief in the Southern Pacific following many natural disasters including tidal waves in New Guinea cyclones in the Solomons and Tonga and fires and floods throughout Australia. It played a significant part in the evacuation of civilians following Cyclone Tracy in Darwin Northern Territory in 1974 1975 and one of the Squadrons C 130E was the first aircraft to touch down in Darwin following the disaster.

The Squadron evacuated Australian embassy personnel from Saigon South Vietnam and Phnom Penh Cambodia following the end of the Vietnam War in 1975. The Squadron C 130Es evacuated Australian and other foreign embassy staff from Tehran shortly before the collapse of royal rule during the Iranian Revolution in January February 1979 and added two ex Qantas Boeing 707s to its fleet before transferring them over to 33 Flight at the beginning of 1981.

The Squadron transported the Popemobiles on John Paul IIs tour of Australia in 1986 and transported archaeological exhibits from China. 37 Squadron along with 36 and 33 Squadrons was assigned to 86 Wing when it was reactivated in February 1987 under the newly established Air Lift Group. 37 Squadron upgraded to C 130J Hercules in 1999. The Squadron continued to support Australian peacekeeping missions around the world including transport operations during the first Gulf War in 1990 91 Operation Solace in Somalia in 1993 and Op Catalyst a rotating detachment in the Middle East following the 2003 Coalition invasion of Iraq to provide intra theatre airlift support to Australian forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. 37 Squadron was strengthened with twelve C 130Hs transferred from 36 Squadron added to its twelve C 130Js on 17 November 2006 to create a Super Squadron. 37 Squadron celebrated the 65th anniversary in July 2008 and was reassigned to 84 Wing on 1 October 2010 as part of a restructure of Air Lift Group. The Squadron retired its C 130H Hercules in 2012. 

This patch dates from the 1990s.

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