HH-3 Jolly Green Giant Static Display Project
That Others May Live
Any American aircrew member unfortunate enough to have been shot down behind enemy lines, then picked up by a combat rescue crew, is eternally grateful for the airmen who risked their lives to bring them home. This was especially true for Vietnam era flyers rescued by Jolly Green Giant crews, flying into harm’s way that others may live. Jolly Green Giant crews were awarded over 190 Silver Stars, 24 Air Force Crosses (three to Air Force Academy graduates) and one Medal of Honor. CSAR was also a big player during our careers in Desert Storm, Kosovo and the Operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Academy graduates, including Max James '64, and the Air Force Academy Foundation have launched a campaign to bring a Jolly Green Giant helicopter to the Academy to take an honored place alongside the Air Warrior Combat Memorial (AWCM) near the Academy’s North Gate. With the help of the Academy and others, the Air Force Academy Foundation has located a historic Jolly Green giant frame (the Inspiration, Tail # 64-14230) to refurbish and display. The overall cost of the new static display including site prep and installation is initially estimated at $1.1 million. The Class of 1981 has a goal of raising $500,000 to support the project, and there is a goal to raise $600,000 from others in the Air Force Academy community. Donors who contribute $10,000 or more will be permanently recognized at the display, and commitments to the project can be paid over a five-year period using the recurring gift option on this page.
Legend has it that, on the occasion of an HH-3 Jolly Green Giant landing at Ubon Royal Thai Air Force Base, home of the 8th Tactical Fighter Wing, Wing Commander Col. Robin Olds literally rolled out the red carpet and personally met the crew as they exited the aircraft. Briskly shaking the hands of each of the Jolly Green crew members, he swore he would personally “kick the butt” of any of his flyers who allowed the Jolly Green crew to buy their own drinks at the club. A statue of Olds, former commandant of cadets, is currently the centerpiece of the AWCM.
Combat search and rescue (CSAR) embodies and reflects all that Department of the Air Force holds dear - Integrity, Service and Excellence - and what is expected of all airmen, guardians and cadets. The HH-3 Jolly Green Giant Static Display project will serve as a physical and historical reminder to cadets how important the Cadet Honor Code and Air Force Core Values are to their development in all aspects (military, academic, athletic and airmanship).
Please consider joining our efforts to bring this important memorial to the Academy. If you have any questions, please contact Raz Doherty at firstname.lastname@example.org.