Category Archives: Combat

What the…

[The following blog post is rated M for mature audiences, it contains some language that may offend, but then again What the …] As June 1973 began, I attended my first fighter jock party in a combat zone. I wrote … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, Air Force lingo, American History, Combat, F-4 Phantom II, F4 emergency, F4 Phantom II, F4 PhantomII, Fighter Aircraft, Fighter pilot lingo, Fighter pilot slang, Thailand, U Dorn RTAFB, Udorn RTAFB, Vietnam War | Tagged | 1 Comment

Bridge and the Art of War

June 1973 turned to July. Most days, everything went as planned: TO-Take Off, rendezvous with the tank, take on gas—we loved the big gas station in the sky—get the target information. Contact the FAC; drop some surprises on the commies, … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, American History, Combat, F-4 Phantom II, Thailand, U Dorn RTAFB, Udorn RTAFB, Veterans | Tagged , | 2 Comments

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

At Fairchild 1972

After my graduation from navigator training in July 1972, I went almost immediately to basic survival training. When I got the F-4 aircraft assignment, I knew that this virtually ensured that I would find myself in combat soon.   To … Continue reading

Posted in Air Force, American History, Combat, F-4 Phantom II, F4 emergency, F4 PhantomII, Family History, Fighter Aircraft, Fighter pilot lingo, Fighter pilot slang, Luke AFB, Mather AFB, Navigator, Navigator Training, POW training, SEA, Vietnam War | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments

Decoration Day then and now

70 years ago when I was young we celebrated “Decoration Day.” In those days the term Decoration Day was often used instead of the current term: Memorial Day. This older term has gone out of fashion now. It is a … Continue reading

Posted in American History, American holidays, Combat, NY, NY History, Veterans | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

In the Pit

Having spent a little more than 1,000 hours as a WSO, I first had no clue what to expect when I left Nav School to upgrade to the backseat of the F4. I actually no clue of what to expect … Continue reading

Posted in Air Force, American History, Bolling AFB, Combat, F-4 Phantom II, F4 emergency, F4 Phantom II, F4 PhantomII, Fighter Aircraft, Hobart College, Thailand | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Little Orphan Annie and the end of the Air War in SEA August 1973

Lest we forget:  F-4 Phantom II—445 total lost in the SEA Air War,  382 in  combat more than any other fixed wing aircraft First combat loss F-4C 64-0685 (45th TFS, 15th TFW) shot down Ta Chan, NW NVN on 20 June 1965.  Final … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, Air Force, American History, Cambodia bombing 1973, Combat, F-4 Phantom II, F4 emergency, F4 Phantom II, F4 PhantomII, Family History, Fighter Aircraft, Military history, Norvell Family History, SEA, U Dorn RTAFB, Udorn RTAFB, Veterans, Vietnam War | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Day Time Stopped – We drop the Hook

During my years flying the F4 there was only one time, while flying combat, we had to use the tailhook to stop on the runway.   It happened while I was stationed in the 13 TFS at Udorn RTAFB,  Thailand.  We … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, American History, Combat, F-4 Phantom II, F4 emergency, F4 Phantom II, Fighter Aircraft, SEA, Tailhook, Thailand, U Dorn RTAFB, Udorn RTAFB | Tagged , | 8 Comments

Racing Back to Vietnam – A Good Read

There are few books that have really captured the world of the F4  backseater or GIB (Guy in Back)  in combat. For Dr. John Pendergrass flying in the F-4 Phantom II in combat during the Vietnam War changed his life … Continue reading

Posted in American History, Combat, F-4 Phantom II, F4 emergency, F4 Phantom II, Vietnam War | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

On to SEA in ’73

45 years ago this week,  a new phase of my life began. On May 15, 1973, I kissed my wife goodbye at the airport.   And set off on what was to be the great adventure of my life – flying … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, Air Force, American History, Combat, F-4 Phantom II, F4 emergency, F4 Phantom II, Luke AFB, Thailand, Vietnam War | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment