'Chuck's Challenge' was one of the last operational USAF Albatrosses. She set a world altitude record for twin-engined amphibians after reaching 32,883 feet on July 4, 1973 and then promptly retired and flown to the National Museum of the USAF for preservation.
This HU-16B was built as an SA-16A by Grumman at Bethpage NY and delivered to the USAF on 7th September 7, 1951 and placed with the 2nd Rescue Squadron (FEAF) at Clark AB, Philippines. It its subsequent service life it was based in Japan (& Okinawa), Puerto Rico and Goose Bay before being SOC on 21st May, 1970 and transferred to the Strategic Air Command & Space Museum.
From 1951 this aircraft served with the USAF as 51-7246 and then with the USCG as 7246, undergoing mods to test the AOSS [Airborne Oil Spill Surveillance] system. It is now part of the super Tennessee Museum of Aviation.
These three hulked Albatross noses sit awaiting their fate at the Allied scrapyard bordering DM. This particular U-16 served with the Navy as 137924 before being retired to MASDC during July 67 where she was stored with the inventory no. 1U017.