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Pflft I Sm. D, Frl., AprH 26, 195T GoldHT>or(» (N.C..) Kews-Arguf
Some of fhe things the Thunderbirds will do hero today.
USAF Capabilities Shown
By Thunderbird Jet Team
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The Thunderbirds. United'States
Air Force Official precision forma
tion aerobatic.team, was organized
in May: 1953, to give the public an
opportunity to ob.serve these.three
capabilities of the USAF:
First: The speed and jnaneiiver-
ability of a first line supersonic
jet fighter. *
• Second: The close coordinaticwi
necessary in actual fightei* tactics.
Third: The ultimate in precision
flying. This precision is a product
of USAF Flying Training programs
and is directly related to the com
bat effectiveness of air power'. Any
weapon, regardless of its capa
bilities, is less effective in the
hands of an | unskilled operator.
Modern airplanes are the most de
structive weapons ever conceived
The more precise a pilot can fly.
the more ekective he will be with
this weapon. This precision, dem
onstrated by the Thunderbirds, is
rfn important part of the doteircnt
effect the USAF has upon a n y
potential aggressor. To accomplish
this mission, the Air Demonstra
tion Team performs before civilian
and military audiences throughout
the United States and selected
All of the basic maneuvers dem
onstrated by the Thunderbirds
are taught to US/VF studeni>^pUots.
The Thunderbfrds'perforfh most of
their maneuvers in a close knH
diamond formation which is
adaptation of the four - ship forma
tion used in combat. This forma
tion affords maximum offensive
and defensive fire power and pro
tection. All maneuvers are execut
ed at low altitude and within a
one - mile radius of .the show area.
The Thunderbirds perform slow
rolls, loops, clover - leaf turns and
a tight 360 degree turn in vertical
bank while maintaining a perfect
diamond formation. Climax of their
aerobatic demonstration is their
famous "bomb burst’’ in which the
diamond formation climbs vertical!
in front of the audience. ,
At a signaUfrom the leader, -each
plane, with a roar from its after
burner. breaks out of the diamond
like an exploding skyrocket. Each
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IFs At Diana!
• • •
DIAMOND DIVE — Holding a tight diamond formation, the U.S.
Air Force THUNDERBIRDS dive in the supersonic F-lOO Super Sabre;
Built by North American Aviation, the F-lOO is the first of the Air
Force “century fighters’’ and is capable of supersonic speed in level
or climbing flight. * (Official Air Force Photo)
F-lOO then rolls and dives to
ward the ground, pulling out just
above the^ ground. Then the '“four
planes turn and cross in front of
the audience simultaneously from
oppi:)site corners of the demonstra-
lidn area. Only a few feet separate
the planes as they cross. The
maneuver demands utm^
The ^olo pilot performs' a series
of maneuvers including four -point
and eight point rolls, inverted pass
es and vertical rolls.
The Thunderbirds travel with six
F-lOO Super Sabres, a T-33 two-
place Shooting Star and a multi-
engine C-119 Packet. Supporting
the jet pilots is-- a full chew of
mechanics and specialists.
' After their first performance fly
ing F-R4G aircraft in June, 1953
the Thunderbirds swept through a
full scredule of sumtner and fall
demonstrations, climaxed by the
National Air Show'at Dayton, Ohio.
In January, 1954, the team took
part in a gigantic goodwill tour of
Central and South America. More
tjian 3,000,000 persons, many view
ing jet aircraft for the first time,
•watched the team perform in 11
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One of the largest single day
crowds in the history of American
aviation demonstrations — 350,000
persons — watched the Thunder
birds at the Washington, D. C.
Armed Forces Day, 1954.
That year the Air Force Associa
tion awarded the team a .citation
for distinguished public service in
demonstrating through unmatched
precision flight performances that
skilled teamwork is the backbone
of airpower in the jet age.’’
In a 21-day period in 1954, the
team performed before 30.000 Air
Force ROTC cadets at 19 different
Air Force bases. Completion of the
schedule was considered a testi-
rrionial to the ability and
Enthusiasm of the airmen who are
assigned to the maintenance sec--
tion of the Thunderbirds. Never in
the teams’s history has it been
necessary to cancel a demonstra
tion because of maintenance.
Changing to North American F-
100 Super Sabres in June, 1956, the
Thunderbirds were re - assigned
from Luke to Nellis AFB, Nevada.
During the Korean War, graduates
of Nellis’ "Home of the Tigers"
shot down Russian - built MIGs at
a 14-1 rate flying F-86 Sabre Jets,
the predecessor of the F - 100.
Since their first performance in
June. 1953, the Thunderbirds have
travelled more than 500,000 air
miles, thrilling over 11,000,000
spectators with their spectacular
display of precision formation fly
ing. In addition to the above “live"
shows, an estimated 20,000,000
people have watched the Thunder
birds’ performance' on television,
and they have appeared in t h e
Warrer Brothers film "Toward
the Unknown". The present team
members have flown more than
13,000 hours and 609 combat
missions. All are'highly decorated
for their combat achievements.
PORTSMOUTH AFB, N. H. —
M-Sgt. Harold L. Hill, NCOIC of
the base Materiel Sei’vices Direc
torate, received the Commenda
tion Ribbon recently for service as
Supply Officer for three Air Force
Reserve groups, consisting of 13
squadrons, while assigned to the
2656th Air Reserve Center, Den-
Let Us Be.
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OUR PLANT AND OFFICE AT 511 S. JOHN ST. — YOUR HOME FOR ESSO HEAT
Since I 891 we have been Goldsboro's warmest friends and
we look forward to serving you. New friends are welcomed
.... old friends appreciated. Our Fuel Oil services are at
you disposal. Call or visit.
. Griffin & Sons
511 S. John St.