Author Archives: Cheeta17

The T-38 Follow-On Trainer…

The T-38A/C is getting old, and tired.  It entered service in 1961 and has served America well.  I had the privilege of flying it for 13 years on active duty – and I loved every moment of it!  But she … Continue reading

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“Roger that, and you can pick up the squawk…”

Gary G. was a senior captain when I got to Vance in 1975.  He had been a Forward Air Controller (FAC) in Vietnam before becoming a T-38 IP.  Gary had kind of a ‘cynical demeanor’ but in a humorous way.  … Continue reading

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“Where Are You Guys?”

One of the ‘additional duties’ we had in the squadron was to provide resources to the Base Exercise and Evaluation Team (BEET) for exercises on occasion.   And one day we sent 2 of our pilots to participate in a staged … Continue reading

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Just Point Him Toward Sky Harbor…

Mike C. once told me about a young Lt. who took a jet (T-38) out on a weekend cross country with a Flight Surgeon who needed to log some flying time.  This wasn’t unusual, I did it a few times … Continue reading

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How Do You Spell the Name?

My second trip with Major General LeRoy Svendsen was a 3-day cross-country to Las Vegas.  He had some business out there and I was once again, his “seeing-eye IP.” The trip was more or less straightforward until we stopped at … Continue reading

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Late Night Lieutenant?

The IP-Student relationship was very formal in the beginning of their training.  It had to be.  I had no desire to be their ‘friend.’  Jay Barnes once explained it very well for me.  He once said, during my Buddy IP … Continue reading

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The Day Goes by So Much Better…

One morning ‘the Burker’ was the opening SOF (Supervisor of Flying) at Vance.  His report time that morning was around 0430 or so.  Helping him open that morning was a female Ops Specialist, a blonde 2-striper who had not been … Continue reading

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Flying With Iranians…

In the late ’70’s, we received 29 Iranians at Vance AFB, OK for pilot training.  In preparation for these guys we had a 3-4 hour briefing on their (Muslim) customs from the State Department. (In retrospect, one of the best … Continue reading

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The Country Ham

DQ was the “A” Flight Commander at ’38 PIT when I was the Chief of Check Section.  I liked DQ.  He was (somewhat) an ‘intense’ individual, hardly ever smiling.  In addition he could be quite “sharp”upon occasion.  But hey, he … Continue reading

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I Got to ‘Put My Hands Under Mike Webster’s Butt!’

In the early 2000’s I was honored to speak at an Air Force Flight Surgeon’s Course at Brooks AFB, TX.  The topic of my presentation was, “How do pilots hide their drinking from Flight Surgeons.”  (Spoiler Alert:  We lie to … Continue reading

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