First Woman Flight Engineer, 129th Rescue Wing
In the field of combat search and rescue operations, Flight Engineer Vicky Doering earned the distinction in May 1996 of being the first woman flight engineer of the 129th Rescue Squadron, California Air National Guard, located at Moffett Federal Airfield, California. As an HC-130P flight engineer, Vicky’s responsibility is to preflight the aircraft; calculate take-off/landing, flight and mission performance data; operate and monitor aircraft mechanical systems such as fuel, electrical, and in-flight refueling.
Vicky became rescue mission qualified on June 26, 1997, and was deployed in March 1999 to Turkey in support of Operation Northern Watch which enforces the No-Fly Zone over Iraq. In October 1999 she was credited with her first “save” as a member of the rescue team which performed a medical evacuation over the Pacific Ocean. The HC-130P crew provided four air refuelings and escort to the HH-60G helicopter carrying the patient to ensure he was transported safely to land. For Vicky and the members of the 129th Rescue Wing, the Air Force Rescue motto holds true: These things we do “That Others May Live.”