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Posted by Jolly on March 5, 2013

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THE BONEYARD

 

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Comments:

Posted by skiphyde on
Kinda sad, really, listening to these old guys talk and looking at the old hulks they're referrring to. Pieces of history, now.


Teared me up a bit when wife Teddi, son Roy, my Dad and I were down at D-M Tucson a few years back touring the boneyard on one of those busses they have. During the tour, I found myself looking down a row of the birds I used to fly, from the damn tour bus, of all things. Jeez, wasn't that long ago we used to just walk out from the ops building, climb up, jump in, and GO! They had all 36-or-so of them all lined up in a row in the sand, weeds growing up around them, with the Idaho ANG logo still shining proudly on their tails, just like they were still parked on the flightline at Gowen Field Boise, ready to jump into and take off.


Sure did make me feel old! But then I had to regroup and say to myself "SELF, you're older than them (don't know if that's something to brag about or not - being older than an F-4???), you ain't got near the miles on you that they do, so nut up, shut up, and carry on!"; (I learned that kinda talk from son Roy). So that's what I did!


Still miss 'em though; always will!


Skip
Posted by Doc on
Roger That Skip. I've seen my share go to the bone yard too or be stuck up on a stick.
Like all retired aviators we all remember the days when we were somebody. Not that we are not now just without the bag, the bravado, and our trusty beloved steeds.

Doc
Posted by Hangman on
I watched in total amazement as B-47 after B-47 were rolled in and jigged up and then chopped up. First the wings then the tail then the nose. Loaded in the compacter, squared up and then loaded on flatbed trailers. That was way back in 1964, my dad was stationed at D.M. AZ. and this was viewed from the end of our culdesack in base houseing. Twenty-two years later and after fifteen years as a fighter crewchief, 11 years on F-4's, I was tasked to prep an F-4D for Combat Damage Repair training. That involved blowing HOLES in her so we could practice patching her up. Well, I reluctantly and lovingly preped her for her death sentence, but when they told me to tow her out to the weapons pad I told them to find someone else.I had recovered her when she landed code 1 at Lakenheath UK and I'd be dam if I'd to her to her death.
So, what I'm saying here is that I know how it is to say goodbye to a member of ones own family or maybe the mistress you left your family st home to service.
Posted by skiphyde on
Yep Doc, nothin' like the kick we got when those twin J79 burners lit off and sent us roaring off down the strip to tour some real estate ripping by at 540k and 50'AGL, huh? I've always been into bugsmashers but durn it, the numbers just go by too damn slow!

Kinda fun at Maple Flag and Brim Frost too, where the air was cold, running away from Beagles, Tornado's and every other low-level machine on the ramp for that matter, then cracking a cold one at the debrief while listening to guys whine about not being able to catch that damn "Recce Bird". One ole' head just shook his head and said "save your gas kiddo, 'less you set up an ambush, it ain't gonna happen" :-)
I'll never forget - during one sortie at Maple Flag the front oblique camera window came uncorked, went down the right intake and we never knew it happened. No sign of trouble in any form from that engine. And we went supersonic for several minutes on the RTB just for shits and giggles because we had the gas. Only indication we had of this was after the chief marshalled us in and asked "where the hell did you guys hide my front camera window??". Of course the motor was trashed (bent IGV's and missing a bunch of other compressor blades that it evidently farted out the tailpipe, but ripping along nothing was abnormal. No bad vibes,FF, EGT, Oil pressure, etc all in the green. Hell of an engine, the J79.

Had one going 2.24 on an FCF once and I don't care what you're in short of the Space Shuttle, that's pretty durn fast.

Once we took a recce bird from Boise for the weekend down to the Confederate Air Force fly-in and airshow at Harlingen. This was in the mid-80's. We were just shutting down, when who should slide into the slot next to us but a then-long-retired Chuck Yeager, somehow getting to fly a Reno Recce RF-4C to the airshow. Never did figure that one out (but General Chuck sir, if you read this, could you tell us how you swung that one?). I'd love to be able to pull off a trick like that myself! We helped him stuff his drag chute back in its hole as there was no chute-shop there, and we traded beers later at the club. What a kick!

Well, 'nuff stories, so take care partner, and always remember "Phantoms Phorever", in our dreams...

Skip
Posted by skiphyde on
Hey, Mr. Hangman!
Just saw your post. Very touching story, and I'm with you - I could never execute someone I love. Pls be advised that we in the cockpits really appreciate your service, and the kindness guys like you gave the machines we flew. Our lives were literally "in your hands", words can't describe our apprecaition, and I wish you well, partner! Like the guys say in the opening page of this website, you really don't have to have any stick time to be a fighter pilot; it's an attitude! And you're there.

Please accept my online salute, sir!

Skip Hyde
Posted by Hangman on
Skip Hyde Sir,
Thanks for the kudos, It was my pleasure and then some to work with you guys.
Hangman
Posted by Hangman on
Skip Hyde Sir,
Thanks for the kudos, It was my pleasure and then some to work with you guys.
Hangman
Posted by Hangman on
Skip Hyde Sir,
Thanks for the kudos, It was my pleasure and then some to work with you guys.
Hangman
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