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B-52 ‘resurrected’ after more than a decade in the ‘Boneyard’

Published: Mar. 9, 2021 at 5:01 PM CST
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MINOT AIR FORCE BASE, N.D. – A once-retired B-52 is back in business.

The strategic bomber nicknamed “Wise Guy” has been “resurrected” out of the Air Force “Boneyard” for service in Minot.

Wise Guy is landing at Minot after two years in maintenance to get back into service.

“It’s incredible, honestly, because how often does a plane come back from the boneyard, dead, getting resurrected here; and I’m the one who’s going to catch it. I’m the one who’s going to fix it up, and make it do its job,” said Senior Airman Miguel Contreras, assistant dedicated crew chief.

The plane was put into storage at the “Boneyard” in Arizona in 2008 to keep up with changing force standards.

“When they’re in storage like that they have an entire group that does all of the required inspections and servicing down there, so they are extremely well taken care of. That environment is extremely kind to the aircraft, the air frames,” said Chief Master Sgt. Ryan Thompson, 69th Aircraft Maintenance Unit superintendent.

Thompson said he expects it will take another couple weeks to have Wise Guy mission ready.

“It’s a great day just seeing her back. She was a great aircraft when we were working on her down at AMARC, and finally the realization of the whole process is a very proud moment for everyone that was a part of it,” said Thompson.

Wise Guy is the second B-52 to be recovered from the “Boneyard.”

It’s a 1960-model B-52, making the plane older than Thompson.

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