Category Archives: SEA

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

The View from the Pit

Unlike Undergraduate Navigator Training –UNT, the F-4 backseat AKA “The Pit” was a very different world. At nav school, I sat at a table in a classroom, “flew” our practice mission, and did my computations. In the F-4 Sim, I … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, Air Force, Alaska, American History, Arizona, F-4 Phantom II, F4 Phantom II, F4 PhantomII, Family History, Luke AFB, Navigator, SEA, Vietnam War | Tagged , | 5 Comments

Freedom Bird

45 years ago, this week in  April, I boarded a “Freedom Bird” heading home from Thailand after a year-long remote combat tour. It was a year filled with many things:  honing my flying skills as a backseater in the F4, … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, American History, Cambodia bombing 1973, F-4 Phantom II, F4 PhantomII, Fighter Aircraft, Fighter pilot slang, SEA, U Dorn RTAFB, Udorn RTAFB, Veterans, Vietnam War | Tagged , , , , , | 6 Comments

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

Not all the Targets were In North Vietnam- A tale of the Panther Pack

As the war in SEA wound down, plans were put into place for an aggressive training schedule. Now schedulers were faced with actually having to plan training, not just assume it would happen in the course of daily events. It … Continue reading

Posted in Air Force, American History, F-4 Phantom II, F4 emergency, F4 Phantom II, Fighter Aircraft, SEA, Thailand, Vietnam War | Tagged , | 5 Comments

The First Time I flew the F4

In the fall of 1972, I arrived at Luke AFB to upgrade to the backseat of the F4. I had come to this point late in life, 28 and a captain, having been a ground pounder (non-rated or non-flying officer) … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, 43 TFS, Air Force, Alaska, Alaskan Air Command, American History, F-4 Phantom II, F4 Phantom II, F4 PhantomII, Luke AFB, SEA | Tagged , | 10 Comments

Questions never answered

Had a great experience over the weekend. I visited David Garbe who lives about ½ hour away and has reconstructed the front part of an F4 D aircraft which had flown with the famed 555th Triple Nickle at Udorn. It … Continue reading

Posted in 13 TFS, American History, Cambodia bombing 1973, F-4 Phantom II, F4 Phantom II, SEA, Veterans, Vietnam War | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

In Search of Heroes

This spring I have been doing a great deal of research to identify those men who died in Vietnam from my alma mater — Hobart College.  Hobart is a small mens’ college in upstate Geneva, NY that had only about 200 … Continue reading

Posted in Air Force, American History, AntiWar Protests, Hobart College, SEA, US Army, Veterans, Vietnam Memorial, Vietnam War | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment