YUMA, Ariz. - It’s an aircraft that helps our military defeat the enemy by assisting crew members on the ground.
We're talking about the KC-130 and on Thursday, the Pentagon gave us a special clearance to give you an inside look.
Captains Craig Fitzhugh and Ryan Welkins run a final checklist before take off.
The four-engine tactical aircraft begins its departure.
Pilots in the front, ready to lead the crew in the cargo bay with one goal in mind.
“Your guy’s safety and our safety for the crews," said Sara Patton C-130 Crew Master.
The KC-130 J Hercules commonly referred to as the KC-130.
Its common missions are to provide tactical transport of troops and cargo, air-to-air refueling, and battlefield illumination.
Our mission for Thursday was to provide air-to-air refueling involving another aircraft.
Soaring through the Mohawk Valley at a low altitude, crew members said there are always challenges.
"Today we were out, there are some low-level terrain out there so you’re having to navigate around that. So the pilot flying he’s navigating that but I am backing him up at the same time," said 1st Lieutenant Ryan Welkins.
However, that’s why marines participating in the exercise are able to hone their planning and execute there skills during the flight.
"We just like to go out practice and train. The time of mission we are going to do in the real world. One of the things we do a lot so we just go out and practice," said Major Captain Craig Fitzhugh.