We have a formation we fly, “The Missing Man Formation,” to honor fallen aviators. It is performed at funerals, various dedications, and other ‘special events,’ with all sorts of aircraft. Essentially it is flown with four aircraft in “fingertip” formation. (Put your fingers all together, and hold them up. Look at the tips of your fingers. That’s a ‘fingertip’ formation.) At a designated time and point, the Number 3 guy pulls up, and out of the formation, into the heavens.
When the North Vietnamese POWs (Prisoner of War) were released in the early ’70s, the 560th FTS had the honor of re qualifying the guys who were physically and mentally fit to return to flight duty. This is another story in and of itself… Anyway, one of the rooms within the 560th FTS was converted into a “social room,” kinda like a bar. It was in this room where we held receptions for these POWs after their first flights – their “Champagne Flights.”
I don’t know who gave it the name, or when, but it soon became known as “Three’s Inn;” honoring those who returned. After all the POWs were requaled, we kept “Three’s Inn” for various squadron social functions; and to congregate after flying to “tell lies, and drink beer.”