Air Guard Veteran celebrates 26 years with “fini” flight

By 123rd Airlift Wing Public Affairs

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Fire trucks spray a symbolic salute at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., as a C-130 Hercules aircraft piloted by Lt. Col. Scott Wilson taxies to its parking spot Nov. 20, 2013. Wilson, who is set to retire Jan 31, 2014, was completing his final, or “fini,” flight in the C-130. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Maj. Dale Greer)

KENTUCKY AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, LOUISVILLE, Ky.  — Lt. Col. Scott Wilson, a C-130 pilot in the Kentucky Air National Guard’s 123rd Airlift Wing, completed his final, or “fini,” flight in the Hercules transport aircraft here Nov. 20.

Wilson, who has served in the U.S. Air Force and Air National Guard for 26 years, is set to retire Jan 31, 2014.

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Lt. Col. Scott Wilson, a C-130 pilot in the Kentucky Air National Guard’s 123rd Airlift Wing, completes his final, or “fini,” flight in the Hercules transport aircraft Nov. 20, 2013, at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., as his wife, Heather, marshals the plane to a stop. Wilson, who has served in the U.S. Air Force and Air National Guard for 26 years, is set to retire Jan 31, 2014. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Maj. Dale Greer)

The pilot’s wife and colleagues marked the occasion by dousing Wilson with water and champagne as he exited the aircraft.

Fini flight celebrations are a long tradition in the U.S. Air Force and Air National Guard. Their origins can be traced back at least as far as the Vietnam War, when Airmen would hose down a pilot each time he completed 100 combat missions.

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Members of the 123rd Airlift Wing douse Lt. Col. Scott Wilson, a Kentucky Air National Guard C-130 pilot, with water as he exits the aircraft for the last time at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., on Nov. 20, 2013. Wilson, who is set to retire Jan. 31, 2014, was completing his final, or “fini,” flight. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Maj. Dale Greer)

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Heather Wilson, wife of Kentucky Air National Guard C-130 pilot Lt. Col. Scott Wilson, spays her husband with champagne at the conclusion of his final, or “fini,” flight in the Hercules aircraft at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., on Nov. 20, 2013. Wilson, who has served in the U.S. Air Force and Air National Guard for 26 years, is set to retire Jan 31, 2014. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Maj. Dale Greer)

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Lt. Col. Scott Wilson, a C-130 pilot in the 123rd Airlift Wing, and his wife, Heather, stand by the crew door a Hercules aircraft at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., after he was doused with water and champagne by his colleges upon completion of his final, or “fini,” flight Nov. 20, 2013. Wilson, who has served in the U.S. Air Force and Air National Guard for 26 years, is set to retire Jan 31, 2014. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Maj. Dale Greer)

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