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The Air Evac Story

Anita Rice

Sound | 1960s

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  •  Departure from Brooks Air Force Base in San Antonio 
  •  Layover in El Paso for an unauthorized trip across the border 
  •  Drop-off in Tombstone, Arizona 
  •  Landing in Brackettville 
  •  The aircraft commander picks a fight with John Wayne on the set of The Alamo 
  •  Return to Brooks Air Force Base 
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“The Air Evac Story, or: Better You Should Walk?” is a humorous amateur film that spoofs the United States Air Force’s medical evacuation services. Starring members of the 14th Aeromedical Transport Squadron, the film begins at squadron headquarters at Brooks Air Force Base in San Antonio. It then follows crew members on their daily mission to transport patients, making stops in El Paso and Brackettville. While the voiceover narration commends the squadron for their professionalism, their comedic actions throughout the film tell a different story. Of particular note is a cameo by none other than John Wayne. Charles F. Curtis, a cinematography engineer with the Air Force, made the spoof with his crew around the same time that Wayne was in Brackettville shooting The Alamo (1960). Curtis helped design a working camera track system for the blockbuster film, and Wayne agreed to make a brief appearance in the Air Evac Story as thanks.