Category Archives: Air Force

Silver Wings

Mather Air Force Base—UNT graduation 25 July 1972 It’s hard to believe that it has been 50– 50 years; I repeat this almost in unbelief. Why? Because I only became a navigator through an odd series of circumstances. I received … Continue reading

Posted in 1960s Turmoil, Air Force, Air Force Academy, Air Force lingo, American History, Cambodia bombing 1973, F-4 Phantom II, Mather AFB, Navigator, Navigator Training, NY History, Udorn RTAFB, USAFA, Washington DC | 1 Comment

Checkride!

As flyers one thing we always had to deal with was a checkride. My first checks were in Nav School on the T-29. If all went well, it was straightforward. That was the operative phrase—all went well.   Sadly, for me … Continue reading

Posted in Air Force, Air Force lingo, American History, F-4 Phantom II, Mather AFB, Navigator, Navigator Training | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Fighters and Targets

In the fall of 1972, I arrived at Luke AFB outside Phoenix, Arizona. I joined several others from my nav class, assigned to the 310th Tactical Fighter Training Squadron, to transition to the back seat of the F-4. The F-4 … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, 43 TFS, Air Force, Air Force lingo, American History, Arizona, Cambodia bombing 1973, F-4 Phantom II, F4 emergency, Fighter Aircraft, Fighter pilot lingo, Fighter pilot slang, Navigator, Veterans, Vietnam War | Leave a comment

Two types of flyers…

There was an old saying in the F-4 world: “There are two types of flyers, those who have been sick and those who will be.” As our training continued, we moved into a lot of turning and violent maneuvering in … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, 43 TFS, Air Force, Air Force lingo, American History, F-4 Phantom II, F4 emergency, F4 Phantom II, F4 PhantomII, Luke AFB, Thailand, U Dorn RTAFB, Udorn RTAFB, Veterans, Vietnam War | Tagged , | 1 Comment

More Random thoughts from The Pit – Phantom II

Some sayings from the past: First to the runway is leadF-4, the greatest distributor of MiG parts!First in – Last OutBrief on GuardGo cold mikeMartin-Baker backbreakerBalls to the wallAll I want to hear from you “2” is bingo (fuel expended … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, Air Force, Air Force lingo, Alaska, Alaskan Air Command, American History, Cambodia bombing 1973, F4 Phantom II, Fighter Aircraft, Fighter pilot lingo, Fighter pilot slang, Mather AFB, U Dorn RTAFB, Udorn RTAFB, Veterans, Vietnam War | 3 Comments

The Real Air Force

Way back in 1968, I was a very green second lieutenant with no real job assigned to a base in Washington, D.C. One day a crusty old chief warrant officer. who had served in WWII, said to me: “This is … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, Air Force, American History, F-4 Phantom II, Fighter Aircraft, Luke AFB, Mather AFB, Thailand, Veterans, Vietnam War | Tagged | 2 Comments

Thoughts from the Pit Part Deux

More Thoughts from the Pit Flight Surgeons: The Docs were great, never met one that didn’t look out for the best interest of the jocks. Two things to remember though: you never told a Doc that you passed out. That … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, Air Force, Air Force lingo, Alaska, Alaskan Air Command, American History, Anchorage, Anchorage Alaska, Arizona, Combat, F-4 Phantom II, Fighter Aircraft, Fighter pilot lingo, Fighter pilot slang, Navigator, Navigator Training, Thailand, U Dorn RTAFB, Udorn RTAFB, Veterans, Vietnam War | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Hail to the Chiefs — Crew that is

Some thoughts on a most important member of the Phantom II Team: The ground crews. When I was a non-rated officer, that is non-flying, I knew nothing about crew chiefs.  Even when I was in navigator training, they did not … Continue reading

Posted in Air Force, Air Force lingo, American History, F-4 Phantom II, F4 emergency, F4 Phantom II, F4 PhantomII, Fighter Aircraft, Fighter pilot slang, Luke AFB, Navigator, Navigator Training, Thailand, U Dorn RTAFB, Udorn RTAFB | Leave a comment

Some thoughts on combat

From the end of May to 15 August 1973, I  flew combat missions over Cambodia. That was the focus of every day – combat: brief, refuel, bomb, and RTB. Now it was over. The air war had ended by direction … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, Air Force, American History, Combat, F-4 Phantom II, F4 Phantom II, F4 PhantomII, Fighter Aircraft, SEA, Thailand, U Dorn RTAFB, Udorn RTAFB, Vietnam War | 6 Comments

The Brotherhood of Warriors

For the past months, I have been going through all the letters I wrote to my wife from SEA. 16 June 1973:  just when I was getting somewhat settled into my combat routine – we lost one.  An F-4 took … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, Air Force, American History, Mather AFB, Military history, U Dorn RTAFB, Udorn RTAFB, Vietnam War | Tagged , , , | 5 Comments