F4 Stuff

Recently I was looking at all the things I had collected that had to do with the F4.

The Phantom II mascot was called the Spook.    He appeared on a lot of things from patches — to letter head that I used to write home during the war — to the Spook in an arctic parka that my wife got in Alaska on a 43rd Squadron ceramic tile trivet.

arctic        phantomii-3

Then there were other obvious things:  unit patches from the 310 TFTS, 13 TFS, and 43rd TFS — TFS was a Tactical Flying Squadron.


F4 other things  include  belt buckles, mugs, cups, photos, and models  and special patches that were worn on party suits.  Below is a 13 TFS Christmas Card from 1973.

air-p     13tfstac              gib-2

While I was in Thailand, I got a model of the F4 that had my name on the rear cockpit.  I still have nearly 50 years later.

F4 Model

Below commemorative patches and fighter related mottos.






My wife Bonnie even did an oil painting of the bird I flew in Arizona.









Probably the most important memorabilia about my flying I no longer have.   After visiting the Air Force museum in September, I decided to donate my 8 mm home movies of combat and a tape recording I made of the last F4 mission of the Vietnam War that took off from Udorn Thailand.   I  did this because I wanted to make sure that they were preserved as important artifacts of the war.  I had previously transferred them to a Cd and a DVD and knew that they would probably just be tossed someday.    That still leaves me with a great deal of F4 “stuff” to deal with in the future.  But I am sure that given time I will find a good home for it all.


About jenorv

John E. Norvell is a retired Air Force Lt Colonel, decorated air combat veteran of the Vietnam War, and former Assistant Professor of American and Military History at the U.S. Air Force Academy. He has written freelance for the Washington Post, the Middle Tennessee Journal of Genealogy and History, and for several newspapers around the country.
This entry was posted in 13 TFS, 43 TFS, American History, Cambodia bombing 1973, F-4 Phantom II, F4 emergency, F4 Phantom II, F4 PhantomII, Fighter Aircraft and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to F4 Stuff

  1. jim white says:

    I still have most of mine. Already posted the picture of my flying gear in the local museum. My Iloveme wall has all my squadrons, High Flight, and a Spitfire I bought at the River Rats II at Ramstein in 1977. I dug that mug out to put in this picture.

  2. Mike Ables says:

    Love the F4D. Udorn 67-68. Weapons Mechanic. Elgin AFB. We went as a squadron in October 68. I could load them bombs today like it was yesterday. Ha ha.

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