OKLAHOMA CITY — After 40 years of service, the Oklahoma National Guard is saying goodbye to the Bell OH-58 Kiowa helicopter.
The single-engine helicopter is one of the oldest aerial vehicles still in service. Since 1969, the Kiowa has continuously been used by the United States Army.
It has been used in Vietnam and was also exported to Canada, Austria, the Dominican Republic, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan. The Kiowa is currently still in service in the Middle East.
Bob Moore Chopper 4 captured the Kiowa chopper as it took its last ceremonial flight before being replaced by the U-H 72 Lakota.
The Lakota is a twin-engine helicopter that was built by American Eurocopter, a subsidiary of EADS North America. It was the winner of the United States Army’s Light Utility Helicopter program in 2006.
The United States Army awarded EADS North America a $212.7 million contract to distribute 345 Lakotas to the Army and Army National Guard through 2015.
The Oklahoma National Guard received four Lakotas earlier this year. The Kiowas are headed to Kentucky before being sold to another country.