Tech. Sgt. Heather Normand of Tacoma has loaded a variety of cargo on jets over the years: food, water, troops, toilet paper, generators, helicopters, Humvees and more.
But the the latest mission for the loadmaster from McChord Air Force Base has an added wrinkle. The cargo will munch on frozen fish throughout the flight.
“Dolphins will be a first for me,” the 33-year-old Normand said Friday. “It’s definitely my most unique cargo so far.”
Two aircrews from McChord’s 446th Airlift Wing leave today for New Caledonia, a French territory in the South Pacific. In an event dubbed Lagoon MINEX 2009, the American military — with a little help from four bottlenose dolphins ¬ is working alongside French, Australian and New Zealand forces to find and destroy more than 200 contact mines in the waters around the island.