The Way We Were
Originally published September 8th, 2009.
Quite a story! (Heck that says something when I have to get out but am engrossed in the story – Lex could have compiled an unofficial list of those readers who “had to leave” in the morning but stayed – engrossed in whatever story he was telling. )
I was almost riding with them in the Canyon – but under ? the wires [shudder]
I was laughing at this: Porky had a girlfriend in Chula Vista, with whom he had a constantly stormy relationship. She had strayed off the reservation, and was seeing a helicopter pilot from North Island, a double insult. [I assume this attitude changed with SNO?]
Reminds me of a story from my Army time in Germany – a Captain I knew – to keep his flight pay – would fly an OH-58 (Bell Jet Ranger) and once invited me along (as an aside I learned if you can see the cyclic move – you are moving it too much – I threw in in a 30 degree bank not even trying – how do they do that?
Anyway Captain Daley told me a story – of a hot shot German F4 pilot – who flew by him at some ridiculous closing speed – right by the helicopter –
On Duke Cunningham – what a waste – having your reputation go from Navy ace to disgraced Congressman (and to fall into that category – there is so much competition – that takes some work)
Somewhere out there is an audio recording of Cunningham as he is everything to maneuver the much heavier and larger F4 into position for the MiG – the deadly aerial ballet lasted about 10 minutes – very unusual for a dog fight –
I think the Navy and Air Force’s experience in Vietnam with the F4 – designed – as Lex said – as a missile interceptor – after all guns were “obsolete” – the exprience led to the F16 and FA-18
Now THAT is the kind of story that recruits men to fly fighters – at least it would for me. Nowadays I suppose it could maybe also convince some women to want to fly fighters, but not being female I really don’t know what kind of story they would relate to as well as I do to that real-life “Great Santini” article. Lex had to have loved reading that – might have even made him just a tad jealous of those guys who lived in the ‘good old days’, too.
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