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About the author:
D. Larry Patterson is a retired US Air Force Colonel and former DoD Management Consultant. Originally from Mission Hills, Kansas (a suburb of Kansas City, Mo.), he is a long time resident of Fort Worth, where he lives with his wife Carol and several pampered pussycats. He has written four novels, several collections of short stories and novellas, a collection of "Pulp" Poetry, several children's books, and a non-fiction book about his father-in-law PFC Bernard F. "Mac" McCarty who was the first Marine to set foot on Yokosuka Naval Air Base in Japan during the Occupation Of Tokyo Bay 30 Aug 1945. As an experienced freelance writer and photographer, he contributed numerous feature articles and photographs to a wide variety of national and international publications. Having always had a passion for Classic Rock/C&W, plus Blues and Jazz from the 1920s, he has written and recorded nearly 500 original songs in his studio. He and Carol divide their time between Fort Worth, the Colorado Rockies and Ozark Mountains in Northwest Arkansas.
301st FW - The Early Days (Thuds and Phantoms)
Fond remembrances by those who lived them
D. Larry Patterson1
In July 1972, the 512th MAW was deactivated at Carswell Air Base in Fort Worth, Texas and replaced by the 301 Tactical (TAC) Fighter Wing (FW). The unit then began the tough transition from huge C-124 Globemaster transports to then state of the art F-105 Thunderstick II (Thuds), which were replaced by newer F-4 Phantoms ten years later, and F-16 Fighting Falcons ten years after that.
Over forty years have passed since that day in July 1972 when Lt Col Robert (Col Bob to most) Johnston landed our first Thud at Carswell and delivered it to the newly formed 301st TFW. A good number of us from those early days at Carswell, and many that came aboard during the following ten or fifteen years, stuck around and served together until retirement, some clear up to the new millennium and beyond. Having known each other for thirty or forty years, and served together almost that long, to many of us, the 301st became more like an extended family than a place of work. After all this time, a large number of us still gather together for lunch on the first Wednesday of every month to catch up on old friendships and recall events from our many years together in the 301st.
Some of us have written and posted remembrances of our days of yore on our 301st FW Page, MyFamily.com, some of which attracted comments that, in a few cases, turned into a lengthy running written dialogue. In honor of the 301st FW 40th Reunion in July 2012, I collected all of these writings and comments, did some minor editing and revising, combined everything into this single document, and added a large number of photos of people, places, and events from our first twenty years of Thuds and Phantoms.
If you were part of the unit, you will recall many fond memories. If you were not, you will gain insight into how we turned a trash-hauling outfit into a world-class fighter unit, and what sort of troops it took to make that happen.
- Publication Date:
- 1494349825 / 9781494349820
- Page Count:
- Binding Type:
- US Trade Paper
- Trim Size:
- 6.69" x 9.61"
- Black and White
- Related Categories:
- History / Military / Aviation