Category Archives: AVIATION NEWS

Aviation News of Interest

Trustee, Colonel Jimmy Lee, Found History of the Air Force

FASF Trustee, Colonel Jimmy Lee, discovered this interesting summary of the US Air Service in a back issue of the Army Times newspaper from last summer.  Because the pages of the ARMY TIMES are so large, Jimmy had to scan only parts of them at a time, but if you bear with us, you will see the whole fascinating history of the Air Force in the short sequence of the eight (8) images that follow.  So, here for your edification is what Colonel Lee discovered under the TIMES’ section entitled: “BY THE NUMBERS:”

To be able to more easily see the text in images that follow, click on them to get full size.

The whole page of Air Force History – Image 001

Image 002

Image 003 showing Army’s New Airship No. 1

Image No. 004 – Depicting the five airplanes in the inventory in 1911 – – – Also shows the service’s budget at the time.

Image No. 005 – Shows the date of the formation of the new Aeronautical Division of the Signal Corps in 1907

Image No. 006 – Depicts with photo the small Aeronautical Division’s total personnel – only three (3) men!

Image No. 007 – This shows the year, forty years later, in which the completely separate USAF became a reality.

Image No. 008 – Shows the year in which the Aeronautical Division was renamed and organized into the Army Air Service, and then, later in 1926, we see that its name was again changed, this time to the Army Air Corps.  The service’s Logo is also shown.  The red circle in the center of this logo was removed during the early part of WWII because, in the mayhem of a dogfight, when planes and insignias go flashing by in but mile-seconds, the red ball could too easily be mistaken for that of the Japanese Empire’s planes, which bore the sole red ball, to represent their logo of Japan’s “Rising Sun.”

Colonel Lee is presently the Commanding Officer of the University of Texas El Paso’s Army ROTC Unit.  The Unit is known as the “Fighting Miner’s Battalion.”

Thank you, Jimmy, for finding – and sending this interesting short history of the USAF to your Website!

 

 

“Last Fighter Pilot” Has Gone West – Flew Last WWII Mission

Less than two weeks ago (12 days), Jerry Yellin, Army Air Force Fighter Pilot (February 15, 1924 – December 21, 2017), the man who flew the last combat mission of WWII, passed away.

Jerry had taken off from the small Pacific Atoll of Iwo Jima on August 15, 1945 in his P-51 Mustang.  He attacked airfields near Nagoya, Japan, before heading back to base.  Unfortunately, his wing man, Phillip Schlamberg, did not return and was presumed lost in that action.  An action, as it turned out, that became recorded as the last Air Force combat mission of WWII.

Here, below, is a short, then two longer video-taped interviews with this long-lived American WWII Fighter Pilot, interviews which helps fill in those last days of the great war, a world conflict whose still living combatants are rapidly disappearing into our history books, with few still remaining alive to describe their first-hand experiences.

Two years ago we did an Aviation News story about this fascinating gentleman, which featured a short interview. Here is a link to that previous post about Jerry,  which can be seen by simply clicking on this sentence.

The above clip of July 31, 2017, is only 3:48 in length, but a good introduction to this fascinating WWII Pilot.

This above video is longer (30:05), but provides more insight into this famous Fighter Pilot of WWII.  His interviewer in this clip is Don Brown, the co-author of the book about Jerry entitled “The Last Fighter Pilot.”

For the most comprehensive insight into Jerry, his experiences in WWII and in life, see this link’s portrayal of him on C-Span, when he was interviewed and spoke at length (42:33) during a ceremony in Yorba Linda, California’s Nixon Presidential Library.  The footage was made less than 7 weeks ago, the last known presentation by Captain Yellin, before he, in the parlance of aviators, “Has Gone West.”

This story was suggested to us by one of our FASF supporters and Aviation News Scouts in Northern California, Cordelia Clark.

 

EAA and FASF Members Fly over to Visit FAS’ 1916-17 Airfield

Just over twenty EAA Chapter 1570 members, many of whom are also active FASF members, Flew and drove over to Columbus from the El Paso, TX area to take part in their Chapter’s first ever group Fly-Out.  Those who drove to Columbus served as shuttle drivers for those who flew over and their passengers.

FASF Members, Mike Florey and John Keithly, who is the 1570 Chapter’s President, supplied mobile radio gear so that air and ground traffic could be easily coordinated.  Mike even converted his ATV into a “Follow-Me” cart, and proceeded to guide each incoming plane to its parking space.  Several FASF members, who are also homeowners at the Airpark, graciously offered their extra hangar space to those who arrived first.

Some of the below are photographs taken by Mike Florey and Bob Wright. Bob also even shot some novel airborne video footage of the group’s activities using his special camera equipped Drone.  This was stitched together with some ground video footage to make the below 5:50 long video, which shows some of the tour’s highlights.

The actual footage in the above video is only about 5:50 in length, while the remainder is devoted to the film’s credits.

The weather cooperated for this first Fly-Out adventure for the Chapter aviators.  While they all encountered a cross-wind, it was not serious enough to create any problems.  The Fly-In visitors enjoyed meeting the Mayor of Columbus, Philip Skinner, who gave them a warm welcome, and informed everyone about what is happening in the small border town and the Village’s plans for the future.  Then the group drove to the historic 1st Aero Squadron’s famous 1916 Airfield, to witness first-hand where American Airpower was launched and where the American Civil Aviation Industry was re-born. The group also visited the Columbus Historical Society’s popular “Depot Museum” and then the also famous Pancho Villa State Park.  Both these sites are dedicated the the historic events surrounding the infamous raid on the sleeping town back in March 9, 1916, in which Pancho Villa’s revolutionaries killed 19 Americans and set the town ablaze.

– Remember to click on any photo below to see it full size and in high resolution. –

Mike Florey, on “Follow-Me” ATV leads just landed Judge Alex Gonzales to a parking place.  Photo by Bob Wright

Cessna 172 parked in hangar.  Photo by Mike Florey.

Juan Brito’s Cessna parked in another hangar.  Photo by Mike Florey.

Dr. Pedro Blandon’s Beechcraft Debonair at tie down.  Photo by Mike Florey.

Columbus Mayor Philip Skinner (center in black) welcomes visitors to Columbus. Photo by Bob Wright.

Mayor Skinner greets Jim Foster at right, and (L ro R) John Keithly and Jerry Dixon.

Mayor Skinner welcomes Juan Brito while (L to R) at rear are Jim Foster and John Signorino.

Mayor Skinner welcomes Judge Alex Gonzalez as John Signorino and Juan Brito look on.

Akemi Robinson looks out from behind barrier inside the historic old 1916 Columbus Jailhouse, across the street from the Mayor’s Los Milagros Hotel.   Photo by Bob Wright.

Akemi’s husband, Mike Robinson also poses inside the historic 1916 Columbus Jail.  Photo by Bob Wright.

Mayor Skinner, at right in black with white cap, wishes the group an enjoyable tour of Columbus.

L to R: Jim Foster, Kathy Whelen, Jerry Dixon and Mike Robinson exploring the old US Airways Marker Arrow and the numerous foundation blocks remaining from the old Columbus Municipal Airport’s CAA Buildings . . .

L to R: Above. at the old 1920’s Airway Arrow are Judge Gonzalez, Jack Roulet, John Keithly and John Signorino.

Cavalcade of vehicles readies to leave for the Depot Museum and the famous Palomas, Mexico, Pink Store, a proud business supporter of the First Aero Squadron Foundation.

Inside Depot Museum with (L to R): Melinda Signorino, Jerry Dixon, Lewis Lawrence, Juan Brito and John Keithly.

Columbus’ official historian and President of the Columbus Historical Society (which operates both the Depot Museum and the surrounding properties), Richard Dean (L) presented a brief history of the infamous raid and its consequences to the EAA/FASF visitors.  At right is Melissa Keithly.  Mr. Dean’s great-grandfather  was one of those civilians murdered by the Villista raiders during the infamous raid in 1916.  He had owned a local mercantile company.

After their visit to the Depot Museum, the group crossed the border to have lunch at Palomas, Mexico’s Pink Store where they were entertained by a talented local Mariachi band and had the pleasure of personally meeting the store’s creators and owners, Sergio and Ivonne Romero (see photo of Ivonne below), who also have a home in El Paso, Texas.

Ivonne Romero posing among a few of the thousands of unique works of art she keeps on hand for sale to her International clientele.  Ms. Romero regularly travels throughout her homeland to find gifted artisans in order to keep her Pink Store inventory like that of no other similar outlet.  The Romeros also own a store in Silver City, New Mexico.

Above are (L to R): Mike Robinson, Melissa and John Keithly,and Ralph Navar.

A special table was arranged by the Romeros for the group of aviators – and here they are contemplating their menus.

Pancho Villa State Park – FAS Jenny to upper left is studied by John Signorino.  Judge Gonzalez and Jack Roulet to the right.

Inside Mike Florey’s Airpark hangar, before departing, (L to R) John Keithly explains to John Signorino the features of his airplane . . .

The end of a festive day in Columbus and Puerto Palomas, Mexico, sees the last plane, Dr. Blando’s Debonair, take off for home.

 

The Lockheed Martin C-130: 63 Years of the Mighty Hercules

The AVIATION PHOTOGRAPHY DIGEST has just released an interesting story about this long serving workhorse of the U.S. Military, the indomitable Hercules transport and cargo carrying transport.  Their headline from today reads:

“We finish out 2017 with an in-depth look at one of the most versatile military aircraft ever produced, the Lockheed Martin C-130 Hercules . . .”

Click on the image of the aircraft below to read the report, see the photos and watch the videos . . .

All the below link’s videos (4) may begin and play at once, so simply scroll down the story’s page and stop all the videos from playing but the one you’d like to watch . . .

C-130 Hercules Flying over river . . .

Volunteers Finish Work on 1st Aero’s Airfield Airway Marker

The resurrection of the previously obscured Airway Marker Arrow took a lot of hard work, but it was finally completed by long time Columbus FASF Members, Sheila Bjeletich, Don Farber, Mario Escudero, Gordon Taylor, Mike Florey, Airfield Security Chief, Bob Wright, and all the way from Las Cruces, esteemed FASF Airfield Site Chairman, the one and only, Bill Madden. Bill’s Airfield Archeological Team is the one that has labored more than four years to locate the 1916 flight line’s precise position and orientation on the 1916 Airfield.

Below are some of the videos and still photographs taken by the FASF’s Videographer, Bob Wright, FASF Official Photographer, Mike Florey, and volunteer photographer, Sheila Bjeletich.  This entire project ran through two months and took many days of labor on the site.

All the below photos may be seen in high resolution and full-size by clicking on them.

1st Aero Squadron’s Airfield Sign facing Highway 9 in Columbus.

The above short (2:21) drone video was taken during one of the volunteer work days by Airfield Security Chief, Bob Wright.  At the bottom of this page’s post, you will find a longer (8:16) video taken during work days – on the ground – by Ric Lambart.

Volunteer Workers take a break.  L to R:   Mario Escudero, Sheila Bjeletich (Project Manager), Bob Wright (Airfield Security Chief and Drone Operator), Bill Madden (Aerodrome Site Chairman), and FASF Photographer, Mike Florey. Photo by Ric Lambart.

Photo of fully restored US Airmail Route CAA (now the FAA) Airway Marker and Power Shed at Grants-Milan Airport, NM.  This familiar looking restoration was identified for us by Steve Owen, who was part of the restoration team that accomplished this task. Milan is near Grants, NM and they are both West of Albuquerque, NM.  The impressive restoration project was organized and completed by the CCHS (Cibola County Historical Society).

Full description of the typical Airmail Route Beacon and Airway Marker Arrow

Volunteer and Columbus City Councilman, Don Farber, discussing project with Sheila Bjeletich.

Sheila cutting Mesquite branches away from Airway Marker Arrow with loppers.

Ric Lambart pitching Mesquite cuttings into truck for removal from site. Photo by Sheila.

L to R: Don Farber chats with Ric Lambart during break . . . Photo by Sheila.

Don Farber and Sheila Bjeletich proudly pose by 1st truckload of Mesquite cuttings.

On another work day, Mike Florey (L) is seen talking with Bob Wright (R).

Sheila walks from one part of project to another part of cleanup and artifact discovery enterprise.

Sheila investigating the Mesquite overgrowth around some of the old “COLAIR” (Columbus Airport’s Name after WWII) landing field border markers, which still remain on the Airfield, but which will also need a great deal of cleanup work during their restoration.

L to R above: Bill Madden working on his computer Airfield application in Mike Florey’s hangar, while Mike (at rear) talks with Bob Wright.

Mike photograph’s Ric shooting video of the work in progress. Photo by Mike.

L to R: Ric Lambart and Bill Madden, watching Sheila Bjeletich dig up some old COLAIR artifacts. Photo by Mike.

View of the now mostly uncovered US Airmail Directional Arrow. Photo by Mike.

Mike’s closeup shot of the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey (USCGS) official seal/marker embedded in the concrete arrow.

Close up photo by Mike of one of the many old concrete building foundation pads.

Mike’s photo of Bob Wright’s Drone in flight over Airfield.

L to R above:  Bill Madden, Sheila Bjeletich and Gordon Taylor.  On any given work day there might be different volunteers doing the work . . . Photo by Mike.

Bill Madden holds together two shards of the heavy glass lens that was once mounted in the Airway Beacon.  Photo by Mike.

Sheila also found a number of the Beacon Light’s heavy glass lens fragments.  Photo by Mike.

L to R: Sheila, Mario Escudero and Gordon Taylor surveying the next area that will need clearing.  Mike’s photo.

L to R above: Bob Wright, Bill Madden, Gordon Taylor, Sheila Bjeletich, Ric Lambart, and Mario Escudero.  Photo by Mike.

High altitude photo showing the Airway Marker Arrow (green arrow points to it), which is how it appeared before it was cleaned up and fully revealed as the result of this work project  The main East-West Runway is at bottom of shot.

The above photo was taken by the couple, Paul and Charlotte Smith, who are behind the fascinating website entitled, “Arrows Across America.”  Their site explains – and shows – how these arrows were used for navigation by the Contract Air Mail Pilots from 1927 until many of them dismantled.  Visit their informative site (it’s preceding title is a link to their website) to learn more about the relatively brief period in time, before WWII, when the early airmail pilots used these concrete arrows to find their way to their next destination along their route.  We thank the Smiths for permission to use this photo.

The above (8:16) video, taken by Ric Lambart, was made during work sessions on this Cleanup Project.

Don Farber using his unusual non-toxic technique for killing the deeply rooted old Mesquite stumps. He uses only a set of homemade Copper nails, which he drives into the remaining Mesquite stumps.


 

F-15 Eagle Air Superiority Fighter Takes Some 1st Time Riders

Those of us old enough to remember the first human to break the “speed-of-sound-barrier” easily recall the world-wide media hype over this event.  It was in 1947, not long after the end of WWII, and the pilot who accomplished this feat for the first time, was of course none other than Chuck Yeager,.  A man who was later given even more publicity when he was a featured character in the Oscar Award Winning 1983 film about America’s first Astronauts, “The Right Stuff.”

Here, immediately below, 65 years after he gained world acclaim for smashing the sound  barrier in a rocket ship, we see the now retired General Chuck Yeager, at the age of 89, getting his first ride in an F-15 Eagle,* a plane that regularly penetrates that once believed impenetrable sound barrier – and it often does so a part of its normal operation.  The General is now 94 and still going strong.  He is without question one of the world’s most famous and acclaimed living aviators, one who began his career in the Air Force at the bottom – as a lowly private.  This video is only 5:38 in length.

And, here below, is the official USAF Documentary short video of this accomplishment as it took place in aviation history.  The clip is 5:40 long.

And here is an interview (14:30 long) of the General done in 1968:

And, here below is another first time rider in the Eagle, Nashville singer/songwriter, Danika Portz. She was invited to ride in an F-15E Strike Eagle at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base (SJAFB).  Portz took a ride in the jet after performing for the 2017 Wings Over Wayne Airshow at SJAFB. Portz has a longstanding history of supporting the military and has completed 5 overseas military tours with Armed Forces Entertainment.  He video is 8:06 in length and it provides the viewer with an idea of what it is like to simply get dressed for piloting an F-15 – – – or any other modern first line jet fighter aircraft.

* Below is the official USAF Description of the Eagle:
Mission
The F-15 Eagle is an all-weather, extremely maneuverable, tactical fighter designed to permit the Air Force to gain and maintain air supremacy over the battlefield.Features
The Eagle’s air superiority is achieved through a mixture of unprecedented maneuverability and acceleration, range, weapons and avionics. It can penetrate enemy defense and outperform and outfight any current enemy aircraft. The F-15 has electronic systems and weaponry to detect, acquire, track and attack enemy aircraft while operating in friendly or enemy-controlled airspace. The weapons and flight control systems are designed so one person can safely and effectively perform air-to-air combat.

The F-15’s superior maneuverability and acceleration are achieved through high engine thrust-to-weight ratio and low wing loading. Low wing-loading (the ratio of aircraft weight to its wing area) is a vital factor in maneuverability and, combined with the high thrust-to-weight ratio, enables the aircraft to turn tightly without losing airspeed.

A multimission avionics system sets the F-15 apart from other fighter aircraft. It includes a head-up display, advanced radar, inertial navigation system, flight instruments, ultrahigh frequency communications, tactical navigation system and instrument landing system. It also has an internally mounted, tactical electronic-warfare system, “identification friend or foe” system, electronic countermeasures set and a central digital computer.

The pilot’s head-up display projects on the windscreen all essential flight information gathered by the integrated avionics system. This display, visible in any light condition, provides information necessary to track and destroy an enemy aircraft without having to look down at cockpit instruments.

The F-15’s versatile pulse-Doppler radar system can look up at high-flying targets and down at low-flying targets without being confused by ground clutter. It can detect and track aircraft and small high-speed targets at distances beyond visual range down to close range, and at altitudes down to treetop level. The radar feeds target information into the central computer for effective weapons delivery. For close-in dogfights, the radar automatically acquires enemy aircraft, and this information is projected on the head-up display. The F-15’s electronic warfare system provides both threat warning and automatic countermeasures against selected threats.

A variety of air-to-air weaponry can be carried by the F-15. An automated weapon system enables the pilot to perform aerial combat safely and effectively, using the head-up display and the avionics and weapons controls located on the engine throttles or control stick. When the pilot changes from one weapon system to another, visual guidance for the required weapon automatically appears on the head-up display.

The Eagle can be armed with combinations of different air-to-air weapons:  AIM-120 advanced medium range air-to-air missiles on its lower fuselage corners, AIM-9L/M Sidewinder or AIM-120 missiles on two pylons under the wings, and an internal 20mm Gatling gun in the right wing root.

The F-15E is a two-seat, dual-role, totally integrated fighter for all-weather, air-to-air and deep interdiction missions. The rear cockpit is upgraded to include four multi-purpose CRT displays for aircraft systems and weapons management. The digital, triple-redundant Lear Siegler flight control system permits coupled automatic terrain following, enhanced by a ring-laser gyro inertial navigation system.

For low-altitude, high-speed penetration and precision attack on tactical targets at night or in adverse weather, the F-15E carries a high-resolution APG-70 radar and low-altitude navigation and targeting infrared for night pods

Background
The first F-15A flight was made in July 1972, and the first flight of the two-seat F-15B (formerly TF-15A) trainer was made in July 1973. The first Eagle (F-15B) was delivered in November 1974. In January 1976, the first Eagle destined for a combat squadron was delivered.

The single-seat F-15C and two-seat F-15D models entered the Air Force inventory beginning in 1979. These new models have Production Eagle Package (PEP 2000) improvements, including 2,000 pounds (900 kilograms) of additional internal fuel, provision for carrying exterior conformal fuel tanks and increased maximum takeoff weight of up to 68,000 pounds (30,600 kilograms).

The F-15 Multistage Improvement Program was initiated in February 1983, with the first production MSIP F-15C produced in 1985. Improvements included an upgraded central computer; a Programmable Armament Control Set, allowing for advanced versions of the AIM-7, AIM-9, and AIM-120A missiles; and an expanded Tactical Electronic Warfare System that provides improvements to the ALR-56C radar warning receiver and ALQ-135 countermeasure set. The final 43 included a Hughes APG-70 radar.

F-15C, D and E models were deployed to the Persian Gulf in 1991 in support of Operation Desert Storm where they proved their superior combat capability. F-15C fighters accounted for 34 of the 37 Air Force air-to-air victories. F-15E’s were operated mainly at night, hunting SCUD missile launchers and artillery sites using the LANTIRN system.

They have since been deployed for air expeditionary force deployments and operations Southern Watch (no-fly zone in Southern Iraq), Provide Comfort in Turkey, Allied Force in Bosnia, Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and Iraqi Freedom in Iraq.

General Characteristics
Primary function: Tactical fighter
Contractor: McDonnell Douglas Corp.
Power plant: Two Pratt & Whitney F100-PW-100, 220 or 229 turbofan engines with afterburners
Thrust: (C/D models) 23,450 pounds each engine
Wingspan: 42.8 feet (13 meters)
Length: 63.8 feet (19.44 meters)
Height: 18.5 feet (5.6 meters)
Weight: 31,700 pounds
Maximum takeoff weight: (C/D models) 68,000 pounds (30,844 kilograms)
Fuel  Capacity: 36,200 pounds (three external plus conformal fuel tanks)
Payload: depends on mission
Speed: 1,875 mph (Mach 2 class)
Ceiling: 65,000 feet (19,812 meters)
Range: 3,450 miles (3,000 nautical miles) ferry range with conformal fuel tanks and three external fuel tanks
Crew: F-15A/C: one. F-15B/D/E: two
Armament: One internally mounted M-61A1 20mm 20-mm, six-barrel cannon with 940 rounds of ammunition; four AIM-9 Sidewinder and four AIM-120 AMRAAMs or eight AIM-120 AMRAAMs, carried externally.
Unit Cost: A/B models – $27.9 million (fiscal 98 constant dollars);C/D models – $29.9 million (fiscal 98 constant dollars)
Initial operating capability: September 1975
Inventory: Total force, 249

FASF Members Attend 314th Fighter Squadron Graduation

Emblem/Shield of the 314th Fighter Squadron – The “HAWK” Squadron.

Once again, your FASF – Daedalian members made the journey out to Holloman Air Force Base (HAFB) near Alamogordo, NM, to both attend the graduation ceremony, and to take part in the award festivities, by bestowing the Daedalian Leadership Award upon the student whom most represented the highest leadership ideals and qualities in the graduating class.  Here, at the left, is the actual shield of the 314th Squadron.  The evening’s featured speaker was Brigadier General Carl Schaefer, Commander of the 412th Test Wing, Edwards Air Force Base, CA.  His talk was one given through the perspective of his own combat experiences  as  a  fighter pilot. The commanding officer of the 314th Fighter Squadron, Lt. Colonel Michael D. Clapper, had his F-16 Viper fighter parked inside the graduation hangar for the visitors and guests to appreciate.

In order to see any of the below photos in full high resolution, simply click anywhere on them.

Here are (L to R): Virg Hemphill, Mayre Sue Overstreet and her husband, Charlie, checking into the gala event with some of the volunteers, who are all students’ spouses.  They are Mrs. Skye Rutledge  and Mrs. Lisa Belanus .  This event was actually held in one of the large hangars at the Air Force Base.  Most of these graduation ceremonies are formal and held at the Base Club, so this was a first for some of the Daedalians.

L to R above: Colonel Jeff “Tank” Patton, former highly decorated fighter pilot, who now commands the 49th Operations Group at HAFB. and Ric Lambart, your webmaster.  The Colonel is also a long time Daedalian. Photo courtesy of Colonel Patton. Notice that the F-16 Viper behind the men is that flown by the 314th’s Commander.

Above, taken by Capt. Kaylee Ausbun, HAFB PAO Commander, shows the various Trophies and Plaques awarded during the Squadron’s Graduation ceremony.  The Daedalian General Nichols Leadership Award is third from the left in back row – it depicts a Fighter Pilot holding the flag and saluting.

The food at the event was colorfully – and tastefully prepared. It included some mouth-watering deserts, as seen above. Notice the cake is decorated with the Squadron’s Emblem.  “STRIKE” is the Squadron’s battle cry.

L to R above: Julie and Colonel Bob Pitt, Charlie Overstreet, his wife, Mayre Sue (in front), Jenine Hemphill, Roger Nichols, “MJ” Tucker, (Unit Program Coordinator for the 314th), and Virg Hemphill.  “MJ” was thanked by the group for her important role in acting as official Squadron Coordinator for the Daedalians.  Ms. Tucker’s principle task for the Graduation was to coordinate its interfacing with all involved base agencies, including Base Security; to obtain the awards; finalize the programs; design the seating charts; handle payments and, overall, to ensure the graduation went smoothly.  She proved to have been more than efficient in successfully carrying out those multi-tasked responsibilities. 

L to R above: Mayre Sue and Charlie Overstreet; Roger Nichols; Julie and Bob Pitt, Virgil Hemphill and Ric Lambart.  This photo was taken by Mrs. Hemphill.

Daedalian Flight Captain, Roger Nichols, describing his father’s USAF career to the audience. His father, General “Nick” Nichols was an Air Force Ace in WWII. The Daedalian Leadership award is named in his honor.

Roger Nichols congratulates the General Nichols Leadership Award winner, Captain Cy “Pong” Eckhardt, of Montgomery, Alabama.  The Daedalians were privileged to have had the chance to meet the Captain’s mother.

Winner of the Daedalian Leadership Award, Capt. Cy Eckhardt (R) presents the framed honorarium of an F-16 to General Schaefer as the unit’s token of their appreciation for being its guest speaker.  This photo is thanks to Captain Kaylee Ausbun, who commands the HAFB Public Affairs Office.

L to R: The FASF-Daedalian members pose with Captain Eckhardt (center in flight suit) and with his two awards: Ric Lambart; Roger Nichols; Mayre Sue and Charlie Overstreet; Captain Eckhardt; Colonel Bob Pit and his wife, Julie, and Virg Hemphill.  Photo by Captain Kaylee Ausbun, Commander of HAFB Public Affairs Office.

L to R above: Colonel Jeff Patton gives the prestigious “River Rat” award to the student with whom his fellow students would most want flying on their wing during combat.

L to R above: Colonel Patton speaking with Flight Captain Roger Nichols.  They were comparing active duty experiences, Roger having served as both an airborne Navigator – and a pilot – during his career with the USAF. They discovered that both men had experienced an assignment as instructor pilots.

A view of some of the guests, including parents and spouses, along with the honored students at their tables.  The Daedalian Table is at the front of photo to the right.