SR-71 ALMA MATER
FROM THE PAST
Guest Book Entries for 2000
have been requested to include recollections from various personnel that have
either worked on the SR-71 or have been closely associated with the program
through support operations. Bear in mind that the SR-71 could have never flown
had it not been for the expertise of personnel in a wide variety of specialties
please feel free to make an entry in:
The Alma-Mater Guestbook .
Additionally, if you feel you qualify to join the Blackbird Association see the link at the bottom of this page.
are Nineteen total web pages that comprise the
"SR-71 Alma Mater and Recollections of the Past"
The original web page (the one you are on now) had grown to over 3 Megs in size. To expedite your Browser loading, I have divided the "Guest book" Entries into Chronological year groups by dates the e-mail was received:
Sat, 30 Dec 2000 19:36 A1C Brian Coffman Writes: I was a Jet Mech at Beale from March 86 until April 88. I just stumbled over this site and was pleasantly surprised at the content and comments. It would be great to hear from some of the ole gang.
Keep up the great work!!!!!!!
A1C Brian Coffman
Editor's Note: That is for sure his Email address!
27 Dec 2000 17:27
23 Dec 2000 19:19 Sgt Gayle
23 Dec 2000 18:56 Ronald Dickneite MSgt (Ret)
Writes: I was one of the first few personnel to be assigned to the Blackbird
program at Beale AFB, CA. In fact we were assigned to the 4200 OMS. I had
arrived at Beale in May of 1965. We didn't have any aircraft to work on so some
of the people were loaned out to the 456th to help them out, some did squadron
duties around the base. I can remember coming to work and standing around the
little building across from the chow hall. There we all would get in groups by
our rank and have roll call. This is the time they were picking crew chiefs and
assistants to go down to the factory to pick up their assigned planes and others
were sent to the other place to work on flying aircraft so we could get some
experience on them. Some of the peoples names I remember are C
D Allen, William "BILL" Bell,
Martin, Eddie Roper, Don Carey, Leroy
Hanson, Larry Harris, Clifford
Fessler, Ed Thorner, Chuck
Carter, Ken Becker, Bill Gornick, H.
Hollis, Williams, Don
Bennett, Schwartz, Kennedy, B.
Kuperwitz, Roger Massey and many more
through out the years. Some of the best times were had were in the early days
when every one was treated fairly and equally. The Squadron picnic that some of
the guys put on a show with top hats over their bodies and their stomach's
showing, and dancing to some tune. I can remember going to OL8 for the first
time what a blast;
Ronald Dickneite MSgt (Ret)
19 Dec 2000 19:17 Scott Elder Writes: Nice job...Great site. I operate
another skunk works product currently. A JetStar, know in the military as
a VC-140 I believe. My boss was worried about flying in a 1966 airplane.
I told him about Kelly Johnson and the Skunk Works and their Concorde beater.
Designs ahead of they're time, and the other manufacturers are still figuring it
out. My current wrench was Kadena based in the 80's for aircraft
Scott Elder, Civilian
Sun, 17 Dec 2000 15:17 Bob Mocklin Writes: I was with the 9th RTS from about June 1967 until my enlistment ended in Sep 1970. I always wonder what happened to some of the guys I worked with: how they are, where they are, how life's been treating them, how many times they've been married, how many kids do they have, and that sort of thing. I wish I could remember everyone's name, but I can't, so here are those that I can think of immediately, without much thought, in no particular order: Sam Lockridge (thanks, Sam, for pointing me to this site), Leonard Dill, Eddie Hickman, Joe Harrison, Mike Sonnenberg, Delmar Anthony, Jim Brown, Joe Felder, Steve Kelly, David Sourwine, Billy C. Langston, Sgt Kesterson, Charlie Painter, Jerry Ingram, Lowell Rollyson, Sgt LeTourneau from Maine, Sgt Dennison, Sgt Hector (whose last name escapes me) ... and Thank You, Sgt Haynes, for putting this site together and maintaining it.
Mon, 11 Dec 2000 16:01 SSgt Richard A. Clark Writes: I was a Simulator Technician on the SR-71 Flight Simulator from 4-80 to 4-90. It was a pleasure being associated with such an elite group of personnel and the overall program. The experiences have been so memorable that it was like I was there yesterday and a web site like this just keeps them alive! Thanks.
SSgt Richard A. Clark
Thu, 7 Dec 2000 11:59 Sgt Shermont E. Pressley Writes: Anyone from 1977 to 1981 Beale, Kadena, Osan.
Shermont E. Pressley
No Email address
Phone Number: 717 2384265
Wed, 6 Dec 2000 14:59 SSgt Lex A. Davis Writes: Trying to find any photos of cartoons I drew on Det.1 aircraft tails and shop doors.(1977 to 1980). I was an Elint/ECM specialist at Beale during this time.
SSgt Lex A. Davis
Sun, 3 Dec 2000 19:11:07 MSgt (Ret) Rich Hummer Writes: Worked Autopilot from Jan 1970-Jul 1973. Most rewarding memories of my entire AF career. Spent most of my time at Kadena. Great site keep up the good work.
MSgt (Ret) Rich Hummer
2 Dec 2000 09:18 MSgt Dennis P. Pugh, USAF, Retired Writes: My brother
MSgt Dennis P. Pugh, USAF, Retired
1 Dec 2000 15:52 Roger Sharp Writes: Having
worked in the PSD for several years, both at Davis-Monthan and Beale I can say I
was thrilled to see this page.
Tue, 28 Nov 2000 15:04 SSgt Steven DeLong Writes: My first duty station was Beale with the 48th Intel Squadron with a Deployable Ground Station. I used to walk around the SR-71 now on display on the flightline at least twice a week. This was in the summer of 1994. The SR-71 was supposed to come back and we were to implement our systems with it. Unfortunately, Congress thought otherwise. Great Website!!
SSgt Steven DeLong
Mon, 27 Nov 2000 23:38 MSgt (Retired) Darwin Evelsizer Writes: I was assigned to the 9RTS Exploitation Section, (imagery analysis) from June 1965 to May 1977 with a one year break in 1971 for a tour in Viet Nam with the 12 Recon Intel Tech Sqd. Some of the guys that I remember working with are Virgil Ditch, Dick Calahan, Bob Rossi, Ted Bollerud, Jim Bayle, Chuck Cordell, Morgan Warren, Don Jackson, Junior Songer, Paul Finkus and Bob Holsapple. More later.
Tue, 28 Nov 2000 10:17 Leland: Your web site for the Blackbirds is absolutely fantastic. I have spent several hours looking through it and intend to look even more. This has brought back many very pleasant memories of my years at Beale, 1965-1977. You have produced a very fitting tribute to the SR-71 and the Habu's, Bat Caver's, etc who flew, maintained and supported the gorgeous, best, greatest, fastest, highest, one-of-a-kind, unstoppable, kick-ass, titanium wonder bird.
One event from my time at
Beale that sticks out in my mind is the episode of the "Great
Every PI in the shop was brought in to scan the film in an attempt to locate the boat or raft. We knew from the size of the raft that it was going to be extremely small on the film and very difficult, if not impossible to detect. I think that it was during the second day of searching that I found an almost imperceptible "speck" on the film that appeared to have a faint trace of orange color to it. The photo processing folks took a very careful look at the film to insure that it wasn't a speck of dirt, pinhole in the emulsion or some other film defect. There is a clock picture on each frame of imagery and we compared the time of this frame to the pilot's log and location of the speck within the frame in a W.A.G. (Wild A _ _ Guess) attempt to determine the location of what we hoped was the raft. These coordinates were sent to the Coast Guard and they applied their S.W.A.G. (Scientific Wild A _ _ Guess) formulas for wind and current drift to determine the theoretical, present location. They sent a C-130 search and rescue bird to the anticipated location to begin a systematic search pattern. They arrived at the coordinates and BINGO, there was the raft with several people in it! The media gave considerable coverage to the safe return of these folks, but very little was mentioned about the role the 9SRW and 9 RTS performed in the rescue.
I went PCS from Beale to the
43 SW at Andersen AFB,
Evelsizer, MSgt (Ret.)
Sun, 26 Nov 2000 00:29 Colonel Jon Kraus Writes: Browsing as usual, thought I might update my Email address. Great site keep up the good work. [RSO 1967-1973,9th AMS CC 1974-1976 ,14th ADV LG 1979-1982] retired 1985.
Colonel Jon Kraus
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Email address updated January 09, 2008
20 Nov 2000 16:18 A1C Thomas D. Moore (Tom)
Writes: I first got to Beale AFB in July, 1967, and had never heard of the
SR-71. I was in the 856th Med. Group., and assigned to the hospital there. I
arrived at night, and bunked in the barracks across from the BX entrance, which
backed up to the field at the end of the runway. I came out the first AM to a
A1C Thomas D. Moore (Tom)
Sat, 11 Nov 2000 18:12 Jeffrey W. Shelton Writes: My Father-in-law is Ret. TSgt Marcus Mitchell, USAF. When I met my "future" Father-in-law 7 years ago, one of the first things he showed me was his work on the SR-71, The Blackbird. What he showed me was quite impressive. What he has showed me has sparked a great interest in what is the GREATEST flying machine ever. But most of all, what he has shown me is PRIDE. He takes great pride in his involvement with the SR-71. It shows every time he mentions it or when he shows me recent books or videos he has received. The same way the pride is shown through the various people included in this website. All of you gentlemen definitely have something to be proud of and this website is wonderful to search through.
Jeffrey W. Shelton
9 Nov 2000 13:17 Son of Sgt. Senua J. Hebert
Writes: My father was attached to the SR-71 Squadron in April of 1965...I know
the date well because I was a senior in High School when my father asked me and
my family to move to Marysville, Ca. Leaving behind my fellow classmates for
many years tore my heart out, but being an "Air Force Brat", I put it
behind me not knowing that I would experience a once in a life time event. The
birth of the SR-71. To this day I still possess the poster with the names of the
original pilots as well as a gold lapel pin. These items I will treasure
forever. As we approach Veteran's Day and as
Walt Hebert, Son of Sgt. Senua J. Hebert
6 Nov 2000 06:30 Steven Myatt, Capt Writes: I
worked as an enlisted troop in the Habu photo shop from '75 -'77. I was
fortunate enough to be selected for the AECP program and I left the 9th AMS for
school in August of '77. So many great people I worked with back then (some are
long gone): SMSgt Storer, MSgt
Wagner, Sgt Howlett, MSgt Hyzinskie (misspelled no
Steven Myatt, Capt
Sat, 4 Nov 2000 06:48 SMSgt. (Ret.) Charles (Chuck) J. Kanach Jr.Writes: I was initially assigned to 9th AMS Sq. during Aug. 1978. I worked in the Comm/Nav Branch, Auto Pilot Branch, I was acting 1st Sgt. and Training NCOIC. During this assignment, I was also loaned to the Base Education Office for a year to established the base PME program. I did all of the instructing for the first year of the program. In April 1981 I was re-assigned to Det. at Kadena AFB as the Avionic's NCOIC where I served until June 1985. I retired in June 1986 from Tinker AFB, OK where I still serve as a civilian in support of the E-3 AWACS. I considered the time with the 9th SRW as the highlight of of my 26 years of active duty. Thank you for the work you are doing keeping this web going.
SMSgt. (Ret.) Charles (Chuck) J. Kanach Jr.
3 Nov 2000 11:37 Bill Burgett ECM/ANS Tec.
Rep Writes: I was a rep at Beale AFB from 1965 to 1969 working primarily on the
ANS system,(NAS-14). Went to OL-8 in Dec. 1969 and stayed until Aug. 1974 with
the ANS and ECM equipment. Returned to Beale and worked in ECM until 1978. From
1978 until 1982 worked on numerous programs until I went to Mildenhall (Det. 4)
in Mar. 1982 Until July 1988. Upon my return to the states I retired. Working on
the SR-71 program had to be the highlight of my entire career. I also was on the
U2 program on the NAS-21 flight test prior to my assignment to Det. 4. Met an
awful lot of nice folks and the memories are still clearly the best of all. It
would take reams of paper and hours trying to recall all of my many friends and
acquaintances. See most of you in
Bill Burgett ECM/ANS Tech. Rep
30 Oct 2000 19:57 MSgt (Retired) David
(Retired - 1990) David "Mike"
Mon, 30 Oct 2000 16:39 CMSgt. (Ret) Horst R. Goeritz Writes: Coming across this website has triggered emotions that have kept me crying and laughing all day. It is like coming home and talking about all the wonderful experiences of a lifetime. I would like to relate a few stories of a great bunch of troops I was privileged to supervise in the Instrument Shop from 1970 to 1976. I would like some time to collect my thoughts before submitting them to this website.
Thu, 2 Nov
2000 20:06 Additional comments added: CMSgt (Ret.) Horst Goeritz, 9
AMS 1970-1976. The most memorable event during my tenure as NCOIC of the 9 AMS
Instrument Shop (better known as the INLET Shop), was the challenge to program
the Inlets of 972 and the "Backup" with the best possible inlet
schedule available without risking "Unstarts". Initially, the core
team consisting of Ted
Hansen, Airesearch Tech. Rep: TSgt Herb
Greathouse and myself studied reams of digital data obtained from our
friends at NASA. (The NASA SR's had a reputation of flying without the annoying
"Unstarts") The data proved invaluable , because it taught us to
rethink our approach and methodology in scheduling the Air Inlets. (this
eventually led to the Digital Air Inlet Systems, DAFICS) (Note we were able to
procure a couple of those newfangled, handheld TI Calculators to do the number
crunching.) However, at the time it was impossible to duplicate a NASA schedule
on the ground with the available support equipment. We needed another approach.
P.S. Leland, it may have been you that stopped and questioned me about what I was doing to the AICS without a work order.
(Ret) Horst R. Goeritz
28 Oct 2000 21:07 TSgt Marcus Mitchell Ret, USAF
Writes: Having served in the United Stated Air Force for 17 Yrs. 6 Mos, I was a
member of the 4200 Strategic Reconnaissance Wing. I was the 13th original Chief
in this Wing which later became the 9th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing. I
received Acft. #61-7971 from the Lockheed Factory. I made the Air Force
Acceptance Inspection on it. The Aircraft only had 14 flying hrs. logged in its
records. In 1968 I prepared it to go back to the factory for
Marcus Mitchell Ret, USAF
26 Oct 2000 07:56 A1C Carl Yelverton Writes:
In March of 1966 I was assigned to the 4200th FMS (later 9th FMS) right out of
tech school (airframe repair in Amarillo). All the shops in field maintenance
were receiving new people to augment the career men which were previously
assigned to the SR-71 program. There were six new men in the sheet metal shop
all were A3C (E-2). They were Blucher, Stokes, Filier,
Thank You, Again
26 Oct 2000 10:18 SSgt Rod Stadum Writes:
Served in the 9th AMS from Jun 71 to Dec 73, including TDY tours in Okinawa and
23 Oct 2000 22:03 Leonard Kania Writes: I
just saw that Col. Bull has passed on. He had
to be one of the most colorful of the crewmen I worked with. One morning, after
suiting him and his RSO up (I worked in PSD), we headed out to the flight line
in our van. Upon arriving at the MP gate, the MP stated he could not let us pass
because there was a police drill in effect. Col. Bull rose from his seat and
told the MP that he was interfering with a tactical flight; the MP was standing
directly in front of me, the driver.
Tue, 17 Oct 2000 15:37 MSgt (Ret.) Robert E. (Bob) Huff Writes: Great web site! See lots of names of people I knew in your Guestbook. I was assigned to Edwards and the SR-71/YF12A Test Force in early l965. I was an A1C in the Aircraft Fuel Systems Shop (Fuel Cell). What a shock when I saw the YF12 for the first time, (no SR's yet). The Test Project was great work and plenty of it in my career field. Being one of the very few airmen in the outfit, I did plenty of hangar sweeping also at shifts end. Then in 1967 it was off to Beale's 9th FMS Fuel Systems Shop. More great people to work with. Then off to OL-8 and back. Left Beale in l970 as a TSgt on my way to SEA to become a "Phantom Phixer". Sorry guys about the wet field jackets, and caps, we really did try to fix those leaks!! Never will forget the sound of the start carts, "awesome, just like the aircraft". I retired in l978.
(Ret.) Robert E. (Bob) Huff
Wed, 11 Oct 2000 10:13 SSgt. Marshall O. Johnson Writes: Hi! I'm Marshall Johnson and was with the SR-71 program at Beale AFB from 1965 thru 1966 as a flight line mechanic with the 4200 OMS. What a great time that was even though at first there were no planes to work on. We built crew chief trailers to stay busy! Oh when the first planes did arrive, what a sight. This website's great. Keep up the good work.
Marshall O. Johnson
Wed, 11 Oct 2000 11:58 John Horton Writes: I visited your SR-71 Website. My uncle was a flight engineer on the YF-12A project NASA did in the late '60's to mid '70's. My uncle's name was Victor Horton. He flew with Fitzhugh Fulton. My uncle Victor passed away about 5 yrs ago. I've known Fitz Fulton since I was about 10 yrs old. I would like to tell you my experience with the "Blackbird". It was in 1974. I was 11 years old at the time. My uncle invited my father (his brother) and I to one of his flights at Edwards Air Force Base. We were on the tarmac when the engines were being started. Fitz Fulton waved to me and motioned me to walk up the ladder to the cockpit. He motioned for me to climb in and sit on his lap while the engines were being started. We then followed her while she taxied to the runway and we drove to the point on the runway where she would lift off. I have never heard or felt a rumble like that in my life even with the ear protection we had on. Once she was out of sight we then went to the control room and "watched" the flight from there. Since my father was a radar specialist in WWII he was noticed watching the radar and politely escorted out of the room. Soon, I was escorted out and we were taken back out to the runway for the landing. It was a thrill to see both Fitz and my uncle Victor waving at us through the cockpit windows. We followed the bird back to the hangar and then were taken on probably the best tour anyone could experience. I sat in the cockpit of the X-15 and a B-52. On the way home, my father asked my uncle why we were escorted out of the control room and he said that part of the flight was classified. It was an experience I will never forget. I just wanted to share that with you. They made the 100th flight #935 in 1976. I can tell you that the aircraft was capable and actually flew faster and higher than was published. There has never been or ever will be an aircraft quite like the "Blackbird" because of the growth of technology with satellites and such. You have a very fine website and if you would like, I would enjoy hearing from you. Thank You.
9 Oct 2000 06:45 Major (Ret) Bill DeHoff
your Web page.
I was stationed at Beale (1967-71) as an Avionics Maintenance Officer.
That was my first assignment in the AF and the best assignment that I ever had.
(Ret) Bill DeHoff
8 Oct 2000 09:00 Sgt. Dan Macdonald Writes:
Great site. My tour at Beale was from 1975-1979. I was a life support tech and
was assigned to the 9th SRW. I maintained the flight gear for the SR-71 and U-2
crews used during training sorties in the T-38. I worked in the old alert pad
facility and enjoyed working with the BEST PILOTS in the world. Special thanks
to Capt. Judson for taking me on a T-38
incentive flight. It was a privilege to serve with all the exceptional members
in uniform at Beale AFB during my tour.
Sat, 23 Sep 2000 15:43 SSgt Rickie McDonald Writes: Being a part of the SR-71 program was one of the greatest experiences of my life. The training I received has helped me to consistently perform at the highest levels in the private sector. I was stationed at Beale from '73 to '78 working in the 9 AMS SAS/AP shop. I think I probably spent half that time in Kadena. What an eye-opener for a child. But, under the tutoring of such greats as Russ Kieter, Larry Tuttle, and Bill Dyer I made it through unscathed. This is a great site and I hope to hear from more of the best. At least that's what they told us.
SSgt Rickie McDonald
23 Sep 2000 07:22 (former) Sgt Mark McLaughlin
Writes: I was pointed to this awesome site by another former HABU, (thanks
Sgt Mark McLaughlin
Fri, 22 Sep 2000 23:33 SRA Bradley Nickell Writes: I worked at the 9th SRW / PSD at Beale AFB, CA from 1989 until 1992. I worked as a technician on the U-2/TR-1 and the SR-71 with the full pressure suits, parachutes, survival kits and other life support type equipment. I remember there was a rivalry between the different "shops" in maintenance of the aircraft and PSD. Some of the people I worked with and I am certain that some of the people that worked in the maintenance shops didn't seem to be very open minded about each other's respective units and their importance in the support of the missions. It was a curious thing to me since we were all working for the same thing that the rivalry was there. I didn't stay in contact with any of the people that I worked with when I separated, I went on to a completely different quasi-civilian career. However, I would welcome contact with a lot of the people that I worked around as we developed some real good relationships working in the environment that we did. I look back on my experiences with the unit and mostly have good memories and enjoyed the time I spent there.
SRA Bradley Nickell
Fri, 22 Sep 2000 21:11 Capt. George R. Mondie Writes: Was at Beale from 4/68-6/70. Would be interested in contact with anyone who worked in the photo reconnaissance shop or knows people who did, especially any info on Lt. Col. John Paulman.
Capt. George R. Mondie
Fri, 22 Sep 2000 17:19 Sgt Bryan Pollock Writes: I worked on the Habu's Autopilot from 1974-1977. Every time I see a picture of the SR-71 it brings back the memories of Habu Hill, MA1 alley and the pride of being able to work on a legend.
Sgt Bryan Pollock
Tue, 5 Sep 2000 05:39 SSgt. Hilda Rodriguez Writes: This was the most awesome airplane I ever worked on. I would like to find all my friends who were assigned to the FMS Electric Shop, especially Frank Carbullido and Mr. John O'Neal.
SSgt. Hilda Rodriguez
Tue, 29 Aug 2000 23:58 CMSgt Edwin Rodriguez Writes: Great SR-71 web site. Beale was my first duty station and the SR-71 was the first aircraft that I worked. I was at Beale from Jan 77-March 81. It has been the best assignment I've had in the 24 years that I have served in the USAF. I ultimately finished my tour there as crew chief on aircraft #964.... the best of the fleet!!
Aircraft Maintenance Inspections
Sun, 27 Aug 2000 15:40 SSgt. Dennis Townsend Writes:
is just a note to say I have moved back overseas to
Dennis R. Townsend At Beale from 1970 till 1972 in B flight (OMS)
My new email address is:
Thu, 24 Aug 2000 13:16 Robert Sweeney, MSgt Writes: I was in the 9th SRW from Dec.,'69 to Oct.,'71 when I retired from active duty. I worked in Acft Records at Beale and Job Control OL. I would like to contact A2c Duffy who worked for me at Phu Cat AB, Vietnam and came to the 9th SRW at the same time as I did or anyone else who remembers me and cares to contact me.
Robert Sweeney, MSgt
24 Aug 2000 10:59 Sgt Lee R. Johnson Writes:
Member PSD unit supporting crew of the SR-71 from inception. Discharged November 1967. Would like information on the where-abouts of any PSD personnel from that period. Thank you.
Sgt Lee R. Johnson
Tue, 22 Aug 2000 20:46 MSgt Bob Rittenhouse Writes: Just stumbled across this great web page. Sure brings back a lot of good memories. My tour at Beale from '68 to '74 was the best of times. What a pleasure to work with such a great bunch of people. Thanks for a job well done.
MSgt Bob Rittenhouse
Tue, 22 Aug 2000 13:24 Maj. Joseph R. (Rod) Mitchell Writes: Had eight great years with the HABUs. Four at Beale, 1970-74 in the Recce Tech and four more as the IN at Kadena and Mildenhall between 1980 and 84. Fond memories of Sunday morning brunches, snorkeling north of Nago, Flying Tiger stews, and all the Mongolian barbecue in the world. Had some nice fog in Mildenhall. God, I hated that IRIS camera format. Would love to hear from any IN folk who are still breathing.
Maj. Joseph R. (Rod) Mitchell
21 Aug 2000 15:14 MSgt (Retired) Steven K Bonnell
Writes: Great web site!!! I was stationed at Kadena in 1975 - 1977, then did a
quick stint on F-4's in the
MSgt (Retired) Steven K Bonnell
20 Aug 2000 19:15 Sgt. C. Hettel Writes: I
was a 207X1 (Morse Systems OP) stationed at RAF
Sgt. C. Hettel
18 Aug 2000 09:44 David J. Mobley (dependent) Writes:
I am another son of TSgt James C. Mobley (Beale AFB 1966-1968). Although I was too young to understand the significance of my dads' assignment, I will never forget the sense of pride he instilled in us regarding the SR-71 Blackbird.
I still can
hear the voice of a 6 year old telling friends and relatives that he came from
Beale AFB, Ca. "Home of the SR-71". Like my brother, I would like to
thank all the men and women associated with the SR-71 and this web site.
David J. Mobley (dependent)
Note: David's brother Courtney has an entry further down on this web
page dated Sat, 29 Jul 2000
Tue, 15 Aug 2000 16:46 TSgt Daniel Freeman Writes: At Beale, 84-95, Chief Metals Technology, (Machine Shop / Welding Shop), 9 MXS, 9 FMS. Rebuilding forward by-pass doors, Wow! What a job, The engineers could not figure them out. But we did them good. Even though we had to stray from tech data.
TSgt Daniel Freeman
15 Aug 2000 09:42 SMSgt Richard C. King
Writes: I worked in the SR-71 Flight Simulator section from Sept '65 until May
'76. Knew all crew members from that time period. Would like to find out what
happened to CMSgt Leo Bessette. If any one
knows about him let me know. Carl Bodey, Oscar
Watson and others in the flight simulator section from 1965 till 1976.
SMSgt Richard C. King
14 Aug 2000 22:30 TSgt Brantley R. Davidson
SR 71 Flight Simulator, Beale AFB, CA Feb. 1967 to June 1975.
TSgt Brantley R. Davidson
14 Aug 2000 19:35 SSgt Cippy Cardona Writes:
I was in
SSgt Cippy Cardona
E-Mail: (none listed)
International Recycling, 1215 South 14
State: TX Zip: 78539
Fri, 11 Aug 2000 18:31 Ret. Col. Edward D. Payne Writes:
I was the
Navigator on the SR-71 starting in 1966, with pilot Gen.
Gerald O'Malley. Together we flew the first operational sortie in 1968.
Anyone that remembers me from the days when I flew, PLEASE feel free to contact me. It would be great to hear from any of you.
Thank you very much,
Ret. Col. Edward D. Payne
10 Aug 2000 14:46 SMSgt David H Harrington
Writes: Already a member of BBA card #404. Affiliation with 100th Strat
ReconWing. A/C tail number and and type, U2R-339.
David H Harrington
Wed, 9 Aug 2000 12:38 Robert C. Ware Writes: I was at Beale AFB on or about May 1971 to November 1974. I was in the Hydraulic Shop. I would like to find some of the people I worked with: Frank Moseley, Bob Skinner, Ed Adams , Lamana, Willy Calious, Filamore P. Alcon. If anybody knows their where- abouts please forward my address to said individuals.
Wed, 9 Aug 2000 01:57 Les Jenik Writes: I was with the 9th OMS at Beale and worked as a flight line mechanic, 43151c, and Crew Chief from 1/77 to 8/80. The first bird I was assigned to was 17960, Quinn Jolly was the Crew Chief at the time. I ended up working on quite a few of the birds during my time at Beale and Kadena. CMS Tucci was the Branch Chief when I first arrived, later Don Campbell came back from Kadena to replace him. Both were top notch supervisors and great to work for. I had three TDY's to Kadena and actually enjoyed those tours. The group of guys I worked with were excellent. We were all young but handled the responsibility of maintaining this great aircraft very well. I have many memories of my time with the Blackbird, "Habu". I can still remember the smell of JP7. Many nights I went home with my hat and field jacket damp with the fuel. On one occasion after wet vacuuming the fuel off the hanger floor at Kadena, after a leaky bird was launched, I actually had to wring the fuel out of my socks. I really enjoyed the evening launches at Beale. The Habu made a nice silhouette with the Sutter Buttes in the background and the sun setting behind them. We would complete the final end of runway checks then stand by the launch truck and watch that bird spool up. It would start to roll then light the AB's and really start to rumbling and roaring down the runway. AB flames trailing long and bright, as the Blackbird lifted off, climbed and banked east. I have been in aviation ever since and nothing has impressed me more or made me as proud as that bird did. The most bone and teeth rattling place I have been is under the aft fuselage between those J58's while both are at full After Burner on a trim pad run. Wow! Crazy, but just something some of us just had to do. I would like to mention the names of some of the guys I worked with at the time: Jim Core, Tom Vankirk, Mike Burrows, TRC Smith, Danny Burns, Pat Lloyd, Edwin Rodriquez, Mike Zervos, Bill Borah, Jim Bob Smith, Bill Turner, Jim Dresher, Mike Austin, Harold Keim, Greg Blas, Mike Meckola, Ken George, Phil Sage, Joe Dousharm, Bob Hasty, Ron Schwekirt, Mario Petrillo. I have been employed with a major airline since 1986 and work as a Non Destructive Testing Inspector. This is a great web page and I am glad I stumbled upon it. I see some of the guys I worked with have discovered it also and I look forward to see who finds it next.
Tue, 8 Aug 2000 08:42 Chief Don Campbell Writes: First 431X1 assigned to 4200th SRW Beale AFB, Feb 1965, retired Feb 1, 1987 as 9th OMS Superintendent responsible for SR-71, U-2/TR-1, T-38 & KC-135Q. Went to work for Lockheed, Mar 87 as Maintainability Engineer for SR-71/U-2/F-117. Quit Lockheed in October 1990 with 25 years, 8 months continuous service to the Blackbird Community. Currently working for Northrop Grumman Corporation as a Lead Engineer for B-2 Flight and Ground Test Operations. Absolutely nothing will ever compare to the Blackbird programs. The people were and still are special and the camaraderie will never be duplicated.
Mon, 7 Aug 2000 19:46 Ronald Girouard Writes: Just got this new computer system and was cruising around. I am a huge fan of the SR-71 and I have a rather large collection of Blackbird items. I am trying to acquire the largest collection possible of Blackbird related patches. I presently have close to 200. I am a member of the Blackbird Association as well as the Road Runners (early A-12 Blackbird). I'm always looking to chat with any one who is a fan of this bird. Please contact me sometime.
7 Aug 2000 18:08 TSgt (Ret) Dennis R. Browne
Writes: A very impressive web site, outstanding! As it did with many
others, it brought back numerous memories of my time on Beale ('75-'84).
Working on the SR was an education, and a very satisfying experience, too.
Read many names from the past, and would like to extend hello's to Chief
Kalinowski (FMS Branch Chief) and Chief
Campbell. Would also like to extend greetings to those who competed
in a "great rivalry" between these two chiefs, and the bowling teams
they captained. Over the years, we established some great friendships.
Proud to say that in '76 I was able to procure one of the specially flown
Bicentennial Flags (flown in the SR), for dedication to one of the first
Bicentennial Projects in the country (the new air terminal at
(Ret) Dennis R. Browne
3 Aug 2000 12:31 Edwin Rodriguez Writes: I
was assigned to Beale AFB straight out of Tech school in Jan 1977. I
stayed there until March of 1981. I started out on the bus #956 and eventually
became the crew chief on #964; the best of the fleet at the time. I worked
with some great folks to include: Randy Lewis,
Jimmy Dresher, Joseph
Dousharm, and Don Campbell; one of the best supervisors I've ever had.
It was a wonderful experience which I will always cherish. I spent a lot of time
over at Kadena when it was our Det and also at Mildenhall
Edwin Rodriguez, CMSgt
2 Aug 2000 11:21
Vicki Doty Writes:
Terry Pappas was an SR71 Pilot in Antelope Valley,
I would like to locate him.
2 Aug 2000 08:51 MSgt. Paul E. Brundage
Writes: I have many great memories working with the Blackbird at Beale AFB, CA.
I never got tired of pulling my car over to the side of the road many times just
to watch the Blackbird Take-off. It was a privilege to support the SR-71 and I
made many friends from 1983-1986 and some I have seen over the years and others,
I lost track of. I worked in the 9th RTS photo processing area and if anyone
remembers working with me, by all means, I would like to hear from a friend of
the past. We are all part of the Blackbird Family. Currently,
MSGT. Brundage of the NYANG.
1 Aug 2000 12:10 SMSgt Thomas J. Howell (USAF
Retired) Writes: I was assigned to the 9th AMS photo Shop from May 1965
to Mar 1972 with 1 year '69-'70 out for a SEA tour. My orders actually read to
4200 SMW, a unit no one had heard of. Some of the names I remember are: CMSgt
SMSgt Thomas J. Howell (USAF Retired)
30 Jul 2000 21:28 Msgt (Ret) Charlie C. Hanna
Writes: I was stationed
at Beale from 1962 to 1968 and from 1971 to 1972 and again from 1973 to 1977. I was a Crew Chief on the KC-135's when they were "A" models and I was involved in converting them from "A's" to "Q's". I was there when the very first SR arrived and I was involved in a lot of TDY's in support of the SR. I was a member of Quality Control when we became members of the 9th SRW and all of us Tanker people in QC were required to be qualified on the SR and U2. Every time we were on a refueling mission, I always had one thought when I looked out the Boom sighting door window at the receiver (SR-71) and that thought was - We may be slow, but we're ahead of you - however that only lasted until the off loading was complete, then he was gone!!!! I was there the day the speed run from New York to London was made and I was there when the SR's set the international speed record as well as the altitude and the speed record for a payload, etc.
I watched Beale go from a little air base that no one heard of to the speed capital of the Air Force. I also have a lot of fond memories from there.
Msgt (Ret) Charlie C. Hanna
29 Jul 2000 09:44: Courtney A. Mobley (Dependent) Writes: Thanks to
all the men and women associated with the SR-71 and to this site. My Dad recently passed away and I was thinking of him when I stumbled onto this site. TSgt James C. Mobley stationed at Beale AFB 1966 - 1968. I remember how proud he was to be a member of the team, which in turn made me proud to be his son.
Thanks again to you all.
Courtney A. Mobley
29 Jul 2000 17:36 SMSgt Howard C. Aubrey (Ret)
Writes: Great site. I was in the 9th FMS from June 68-Mar 69 (I cross
trained to Safety), in the Electric Shop. I came to Beale (with a few
others) from Glasgow AFB after returning from Kadena in 68 and closing
I remember watching #977 when it aborted. I was assisting on an ADS change on #956 and went back to the blast fence to take a break about the same time he started take-off roll. Anyone else remember the crowd standing on the crew chief stand watching helplessly as he rolled down the runway streaming flames and black smoke? Watching the RSO punch out? And cheering when it looked like he was going to make it? Wanting to get back to the shop to see if any of us had recently signed off on anything on that airplane? (Geez, hope my name wasn't in the 781).
Howard C. Aubrey (Ret)
Tue, 18 Jul 2000 21:14: James Gough, Civilian Writes: Former member of Detachment 6 at Norton AFB. Great site and keep up the hard work. Anyone form Det 6 or any of the great Air Force or Lockheed team members out there would love to hear from you.
James Gough, Civilian
5 Jul 2000 16:20 MSgt
I was one
of the Original members of the SR-71 team at Beale, before we got our Birds. We
did a lot of painting and other stuff while we waited for school, but enjoyed
every minute of it. I left Beale and went to
Editors Note: The Habu "Fish Hook" story can be found on the following "Alma-Mater" webpage. It is located about half-way down the page courtesy of Bryan Romine. ./srre97~1.htm
Added E-Mail dated: Mon, 24 Jul 2000 15:59
Haynes, after viewing your web pages, it shocked my memory in to a lot of
I recall bringing something to the Habu collection I got from a tour of duty in
The basic rules of the Iron Horse club was that from an Iron Horse you didn't get any sh**. So it follows that if you were told something from a fellow member you accepted it as the truth. If the occasion arose, if ever, when you found out that what you were told was untrue, the punishment consisted of the liar being buried in Horse Sh**. To this day, to the best of my knowledge, a burial never occurred, this Club started in 1959 at Hahn AFB,
28 Jun 2000 07:18 Ltc George "G. T."
Morgan Writes: Hey guys, Good to see some familiar names! Bill
Gornick, Tom Allocca, others. Sure miss
those Det 8 days..... Daiquiri parties....Secret bar.....White beach..
Never have and never will meet a bunch of people like those I came in contact with during my 11 years as a RSO in the program.... thank you all!!
Hooks and Boogie!!
LTC George "G. T." Morgan
27 Jun 2000 14:43 Darrell A. Martin Writes: I was stationed at Edwards AFB from 1963 thru 1965. When I first saw this airplane I new it was sometime special. Our Detachment was located on the center taxiway, and I would waive at the pilots as the taxied by. I remember that day when President Johnson made the announcement and watched as the three airplanes made fly bys. I remember one of the aircraft nose was a little different than the others, and seeing on the tail a ADC (Air Defense Command) Logo. I thought sure this was going to be the replacement for our F-106's, but unfortunately this was not to be. It was a great experience for me to watch the big beautiful airplane land and takeoff, it never should have been retired. Thank you for this web site, so I may continue by love affair with this mighty airplane.
Darrell A. Martin
26 Jun 2000 17:38 SMS William G. Todd Writes:
I arrived at PSD, Beale AFB, CA in July 1971 and retired from Beale in July
1989. Now work for United Space
SMS William G. Todd
17 Jun 2000 20:04: Sgt Neal Pinkowski Writes:
Served as KC-135Q crew chief out of Kadena in 71+72. I remember those longs days
Would like to hear from anyone who was there at that time or anyone at all. Let me hear from you.
Sgt Neal Pinkowski
14 Jun 2000 16:35 William S Modes Writes: I flew Lear jet models 23,24,35,55 and
currently instructing in my North American AT-6 at Prescott, Az. I am
looking for a long lost friend who flew backseat in SR-71/B-58's. his name is Jim
Fagg, please help me find him. I worked with Jim at Lockheed (Skunk
William S Modes
Sat, 10 Jun 2000 11:19 B.B. Cole (SGT) Writes: Great Site. I was fortunate enough to be part of the SR-71 ground crew from May 1987- July 1989. It was and still is a great aircraft. After its retirement, I spent the remainder of my time in the Air Force crewing A-10A's and Tanker 135 Q models. I must admit that after working on the SR, nothing else could hold a candle to its mystique, design, and speed. Working on tankers at Beale in the early 90's, I still was able to see the SR hangers at night on the way to the tanker line, in a very quiet and lonely atmosphere. Nothing in my mind could ever beat the launch, and recovery of and SR. All good things eventually come to an end.
B.B. Cole (SGT)
Wed, 31 May 2000 13:16 Leo V. Schesser Writes: I worked in the 9th FMS at Beale AFB from 1968-1970. My nickname was "Slick". They called me this because to save time and money, I could be slid between the intake cowling and the spike and check the compressor blades for cracks with dye and a black light. this would avoid having to raise the wing and drop the engine. I went TDY to Kadena Okinawa for 4 months and had a blast!! Two good buddies were John Tackett and Bob Barbash. Have not heard from any one since. I'd like to hear from anyone who remembers the good times. Sincerely,
Mon, 29 May 2000 14:50 Msgt Elvis C. Minton Writes: Elvis Clayton Minton was my Father. He served at Edwards AFB from 1964-1968. He loved the SR-71 Blackbird. We was dedicated to keeping the "Big Blackbird up in the Big Blue". We was the NCOIC of the Auto-Pilot section while at Edwards. He retired in 1968 and past away in 1991. From the time he retired up until his death he loved to talk about his experiences with the people and the opportunity to be associated with the YF-12 and SR-71. If anybody has any insight about his work or worked with him at Edwards I would appreciate hearing from you.
19 May 2000 17:02 Tsgt Charles J. Karasinski
Writes: I was stationed at Beale AFB, Ca., from 1975-1980 and 1982-1987. I was a
member of the "
God Bless everyone who work on, supported and flew the SR-71.
Tsgt Charles J. Karasinski, Retired USAF
Editors Note: I questioned Charles about the origin of the Bat Cavers and here is his reply:
STATIONED AT BEALE AFB, CA. TWO DIFFERENT TIMES. BOTH TIMES I WAS
ASSIGNED TO THE SLR (SIDE LOOKING RADAR) SHOP. SOME ONE CAME UP WITH THE
IDEA OF CALLING US BATS BECAUSE OF THE CONNECTION WITH RADAR. BEFORE LONG, IDEAS WENT FURTHER AND FURTHER TO THE POINT WE HAD T-SHIRTS, HATS, STENCILS, A SHIELD (COPIED AFTER THE SAC PATCH) AND THERE WERE EVEN A SET OF BATS MADE FOR THE SQUADRON COMMANDER WHEN HE GOT PROMOTED TO FULL BULL COL.
I KNOW SOME OF THE PEOPLE WHO KEPT THE BALL ROLLING AND KEPT COMING UP WITH
MORE AND MORE IDEAS.
HERE ARE A FEW:
HE MAY BE ABLE TO FILL YOU IN MORE AND PUT YOU IN CONTACT WITH PETE
FISCHER. HE SEPARATED FROM THE SERVICE, BUT WAS A KEY MEMBER OF THE "
STUTZMAN: EMAIL STUTZMAN@BLUERIDGE.NET
STUTZ DID ALOT OF THE PROJECTS AND ART WORK, IF I REMEMBER CORRECTLY.
STUDARDS: EMAIL email@example.com
STEVE WAS STATIONED THERE WHEN I WAS AND MAYBE PUT SOME LIGHT ON SOME
GRATTON: EMAIL JGRATTON@USWEST.NET
JOHNNY WAS IN THE PHOTO SHOP BUT WAS ALWAYS PART OF OUR TO-DO AND TOOK
PART IN SOME OF OUR RAIDS.
SPACY: E-MAIL SPACYB@AIRCADIZ.NET
COL. SPACY I BELIEVE WAS THE COMMANDER WHO RECEIVED THE BATS WHEN HE
ALL ARE MEMBERS OF THE ALMA MATER.
LONG LIVE THE BAT CAVE MEMBERS.
Thu, 11 May 2000 20:36 SSgt (RET) Anthony B. McKinney (Mac) Writes:
I was station at Beale from Feb.67 to Aug.69. I worked in 9th OMS This has brought back a lot of long nights, hot days and fun at Beale. Thank you for them. Please let me know of the next reunion. The SR-71 was the best aircraft that I ever work on. I am proud to say I have worked on the fastest airplane... SR-71 and the biggest airplane...C5A while in the USAF and USAFR. Thank you for the web site.
SSgt (RET) Anthony B. McKinney (Mac)
Email updated January 09, 2008
10 May 2000 05:31 Sgt. Mark Gaulin Writes:
Worked in the SR-71 Program on
Sgt. Mark Gaulin
9 May 2000 10:25 Wm. M. "Bill" Gornik,
CMSgt USAF (Ret) Writes: In early May 1964, I received orders assigning
me to a classified project at Edwards AFB,
Wm. M. "Bill" Gornik, CMSgt USAF (Ret)
Tue, 9 May 2000 20:42 MSgt Gerald L. Harrah Writes: Found your web pages a few weeks ago. You have really done an outstanding job. It brought back many fond memories of the Aircraft and the personnel associated with the Blackbird organization. I was assigned to the 4200 OE&T in Feb. of 1966. I was the first crew chief assigned to Aircraft 970. We sure put in many 14 and 16 hour days but I would not change a thing. Just to think that you were one of only a hand full of people in the Air Force to have the opportunity to be associated with such a remarkable Aircraft as the SR-71. Later I was Crew Chief on 971 until I transferred to
MSgt Gerald L. Harrah
Blackbird Assn #791
8 May 2000 07:49:
Tue, 2 May 2000 Sgt Michael Lowe Writes:
assignment was at Beale AFB Dec 1969. Spent next 3 years TDY to Kadena (8 tours)
at barracks 108. Worked Photo shop and did one TDY as NCOIC. I remember Bob
to hear from or about them.
Sgt Michael Lowe
Fri, 28 Apr 2000 10:24 Dennis McArdle Writes:
memory was the 25th anniversary fly-by at
22 Apr 2000 15:51 LTC Thomas R. Allocca, (Ret)
Writes: I had the good fortune of being stationed at Beale AFB CA from 1967 to
1974. I actually participated in two stellar programs .. the SR-71 and a related
program with the 4200 support squadron. I enjoyed SR-71 crew duties immensely,
as we all did. Some names I remember fondly are Maj.
LTC Thomas R. Allocca, (Ret)
22 Apr 2000 13:40 MSGT Gerald Berger Writes:
Was a military member of the 9SRW from 1966 until I retired in 1969. During that
time I was assigned to the EMR shop in the AMS Squadron and had 8 months of TDY
in support of our efforts in
I'm still waiting for another call.
Sat, 22 Apr 2000 18:29 Norman Bobb Writes: Thanks for all the hard work in putting the SR-71 history together.
I am still hoping for an email from some of the guys I worked with in the simulator section and the MPC. I am sure they will find it some day. I have a new address: firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks again.
Tue, 18 Apr 2000 09:23 Lou Pagnoni Writes: I was stationed at Beale AFB and worked in the Auto Pilot Shop in 9AMS from 76-79. I look back with pride on the days/nights spent working on such an awesome aircraft. I didn't know it at the time but I was very lucky to be apart of that great program. I took several TDYs to DET1 and DET2 and had some great times. Would like to hear from any of the people who were there during that time.
15 Apr 2000 13:34:21 Formerly Sgt. (E-4) John
W. Schuff Writes: 9th OMS Feb 73 to Sept 76. 7 TDY's to Kadena with
13 stops at Hickam and one in
During my first year I broke my left little finger on the swing shift. We were taking a rollaway tool box back to the Quonset hut by putting it into the back of the expediter van. It stalled as per normal. With the tool box in the open rear doorway, we gave the van a push. The driver had it in first gear and when he popped the clutch, the toolbox fell on my hand. I got two weeks in the hospital, two week of sick leave and two weeks light duty (I became Sgt. Polejewski's office assistant), which helped me get through the books I needed to upgrade to the 43151C job specialty
Two near accidents. First one at Beale on the midnight, preflight shift. While on the infamous left inboard wing I spotted a quarter turn fastener looking suspiciously un-secure on the outboard nacelle forward of the outboard wing. Rather than get down, position a stand and check it, I choose to reach over the top. Got over center and nearly took a nose dive. Sgt. Paul J. "Jay" Tolbert, in the front cockpit with earmuffs on due to the noisy equipment heard my cries for help and came to my rescue. Are you out there Jay?
before I was married (Nov. 1, 1975) I was in the hangar for the engine start
before flight. I was going from the front of the aircraft to the rear,
perhaps to close up a panel we left open for inspection after flight control
checks or something like that. Rather than take the safe route around the
side of the hangar, in my mental distraction just prior to marriage, I found
myself walking straight toward the left spike/inlet area. What is it about
the left side??? I believe
Sgt. (E-4) John W. Schuff
Tue, 4 Apr 2000 20:02 A1C Glenn H. Hawkins (Discharged 5-69) Writes: Assigned Beale AFB June 1967. 9th SRW (OMS squadron) Jet Aircraft Mechanic 1 & 2 engine. Worked on aircraft #71-72-73-74 Trainers #56 & 57 during this time.
Went TDY to
A1C Glenn H. Hawkins
1 Apr 2000 19:34 Sgt Neal Pinkowski Writes:
Hello to everyone. This is a great site that I visit often. Many fond memories
here and lifelong friends I have met during my days in
Sgt Neal Pinkowski
Thu, 30 Mar 2000 06:32 T/sgt James B. Cordes Writes: Blackbird Charter Member #274 I was with the program in 1964 in 4200 OE&T. Went to Beale in 1967 (Ret) in 1971. Could not bring up my name on members list. I have a scrap book I started in 1964, I thought you might like to see what I have, Lots of early photos, speed runs & others.
Looking forward to the next reunion.
See you there.
James B. Cordes, TSgt (Ret.)
27 Mar 2000 20:32 MSgt Shayne Meder Retired
Writes: Hi, my experience with the Blackbird began in 1994 as the Restoration
26 Mar 2000 10:42 Dean R. Engberg (Msgt, USAF Ret)
Writes: I arrived from Hamilton AFB to Edwards AFB, (Hanger 1810) for assignment
to Detachment 9, 4608 Support Squadron (ADC) on June 1, 1965 as a crew chief.
The Squadron was assigned to test and evaluate the YF-12A and part of the
SR-71/YF-12 Test Force. The Commander at the time was
Dean R. Engberg (Msgt, USAF Ret)
Fri, 24 Mar 2000 02:59 Dr. William Eu(GENE) Vedder Writes: Hello to all of my former Air Force & intelligence agency friends who served with me in the SR program at Beale AFB & Edwards AFB - you know your names and when.
Any of you wishing to re-establish contact are more than welcome to email me directly and all will be answered.
Hope all of you guys are doing well.
William Eu(GENE) Vedder
23 Mar 2000 18:25 MSGT Ronald J. DeLozier (Retired)
I just got a "netmindit" message there was new stuff on the Alma Mater page. Going through it, I noticed Larry Webster's remark about one Crew Chief got a "Yellow" model of the SR-71. I was there then and remember it took quite a few tries to get the aircraft to look like it did. If the truth be known, that aircraft was a "Hanger Queen" and the model was put into an oven and semi-melted so that it drooped significantly, front to rear and side to side. When the model was of the appropriate droopy shape it was then painted "AGE" yellow, and presented to the Crew Chief during an awards presentation at the picnic. I wonder how many of the early folks in OMS remember Friday afternoons down at the "Support Q-hut", where cases of suds were cooled instantly with LN2 and passed around for us to enjoy. Or how many of us made the trip to the hanger with screw bags in hand to "cook" the screws. I've got a real neat story about that, maybe for another time. Leland thanks again for setting up the site and maintaining it. Hope to see you at the next reunion along with all the other folks that worked on the "Worlds Fastest, Highest Flying, Production Aircraft"!!!
Ronald J. DeLozier (Retired)
Tue, 21 Mar 2000 22:45: Sgt. Daniel Lee Thompson Writes :
I Worked on
the SR-71 Blackbird 9TH Field Maintenance crew at Beale AFB in Marysville
How can I get a listing of the rest of the airmen?
Your Fellow Airman,
Daniel Lee Thompson
8 Mar 2000 00:36 W. McQuaw Writes:
Hi. I Just found your great site on the Blackbird. It brings back a lot of memories. As a Lockheed supervisor I worked on the complete production run. I also made a few trips to Beale to help solve some of your problems. I retired in 1978 and am now living in
Keep up the good work. Regards,
14 Mar 2000 00:08 Paul Bunnell (The Mobility
I don't know if you remember me.
I worked on the SR-71 and the T-38's with Val at Beale.
Its nice to see some old SR people are around.
17 Mar 2000 07:16 MSgt Anthony Comberrel
I was assigned to the 9th Strat Recon Wg (Training Control Div) in 1964.
Later, after a tour of duty in
Section until I retired in 1972.
At the time of my retirement,
12 Mar 2000 12:31 Milton F. Appelhof, CMSgt (Ret)
I started with the SR-71/U-2 program May of 1979 as the Aero Repair shop chief until December when I was assigned as the assistant branch chief of Systems Branch until December of 1995. I was then assigned to Det 2,
F. Appelhof, CMSgt (Ret)
10 Mar 2000 11:57 Sgt
James A. Forrest Writes:
My tour was from early 1967 to Sep. 1970. I was a member of the 9th SRW. My field was Mechanical Accessories. The field name was changed at least once during my tour I don't remember the other name. I remember the shop was was next to the hydraulics shop. Our boss the whole tour was M/Sgt Robert "Dutch"
James A. Forrest
5 Mar 2000 16:41 Lt. Col John D. Small (USAF Ret)
I served as an avionics officer in the 9th AMS from 1969 until 1971 and then again in 1972 until 1973 when I went to 15AF as Chief of Logistics for Reconnaissance Aircraft. What a great unit.
I spent about much time running phone patches (over phone) as I did doing my primary duty. It was great reliving old times by reading the comments from old friends.
Col John D. Small (USAF Ret)
5 Mar 2000 13:13 Bobby E. Jones Msgt (Ret)
Great web page guys. Lots of memories floating there. I was with the original group in '65. assigned to the 4200th, signed in at Jack Rabbit Hill. Any one remember that place? Worked on the B52 and tankers for the 456 before we got the black birds. Then spent a lot time stripping and painting jacks and equipment. sent to Edwards in Jan 66 to learn about SR 71 but only worked on Yf 12s there. Worked in the Fuel cell shop with a lot of great hard working folks that were truly professionals. I remember thinking that at the time that it was totally impossible to work 7 days a week, 24 hours a day on just one airplane. Went to OL8 with a great group of guys and have many memories of a lot of "firsts" that we accomplished. One of the firsts was getting a look at the D-21 under the wing of a B52 just after we stopped being the 4200th and became the 9th FMS and the D21 people were the 4200th. I have had many adventures since I left Beale in 69, including living and working in
E. Jones Msgt (Ret)
27 Feb 2000 Roy L. Poole Writes:
I worked for Lockheed in supervising assembly of portions of the SR-71. I worked for Lockheed for 18 years until 1972 at
is such a magnificent plane that is awe inspiring. Its capabilities still defy
my understanding. Anyone working with me please feel free to contact.
27 Feb 2000 09:54 SSgt John Palinkas Writes:
I was assigned to the 9th SRW from Dec 1970 to Dec 1972 in the AR&R SHOP.
tours at OL and still have many memories of 108 barracks.
Any one remember me please contact.
I was from
22 Feb 2000 14:25 Sgt Mark R. Flaherty Writes:
Great web site, I just happened to stumble upon it.
I was at
A special thanks to SMSgt Jerry Golson, SSgt EJ Holmes and to the distilled spirits Jeff Jolley, Bob Johnson, Rick Tuffs, Tom Molusis.
Mark R. Flaherty
22 Feb 2000 13:52 Sgt. Danny Clymer Writes:
I served from Sept. 1976 until Aug. 1981 and was assigned to the security police squadron there at Kadena from March 1978 until early 1981. I guarded the SR-71 numerous times while stationed at Kadena. One thing I will very much remember was the typhoon that came thru in 1980 that nearly tore the roof off the "typhoon proof building".
bring back some memories and letting me sign in. I currently work for the Broken
Arrow Police Department,
Mon, 21 Feb 2000 22:13 Noah H. Hampton Writes:
I worked in
support of the SR-71
I was a
civilian employee working at Norton AFB.
18 Feb 14:45 2000 John L. Minor Writes:
Habu's Forever! Here's an update to my 15 Feb 1999 entry with a new email address. I'm no longer associated with the Lockheed Skunk Works. As of June 1999, I am now working at the
Sun, 13 Feb 2000 20:02 MSgt (Ret) David Lindenmuth Writes:
I Would like to hear from any one of the Beale Bandits
That were at Beale AFB
between June of 1984 and July of 1989.
MSgt (Ret) David Lindenmuth
13 Feb 2000 02:49 A1C Donald L Arend Jr.
I was stationed at Beale AFB from June '65 to Sept '67.
I worked on the T-38 line with Bob Ford and Jim. I can't remember his last name.
I also worked with Bill Erbele, Joe Deperreo and Bruce Allen who worked at one of the local radio stations during that time.
Donald L Arend Jr.
11 Feb 2000 20:18 SSgt David W Mitchell
On reading Reid Cameron's guest book entry, it wasn't the back that ached, but my head. I think someone held my feet as I did a one-handed handstand, inserted head-first under the instrument panel. Amazing! I think of the sight of the afterburners climbing skyward in the early morning hours, twin blue-white spotlights gaining altitude. Nothing ever resembled a UFO more... Watching the intakes create mini-cyclones of JP-7 fuel being sucked up from the hangar floor. The sight of a Buick Wildcat start cart literally shredding it's V-8 engine during a start. And what the heck was a TELMU? I can't say... I have just joined the Blackbird Association, and hope to make it to the next reunion. See you there?
David W Mitchell
10 Feb 2000 16:44 SSgt Jack Pavia Writes:
I was assigned to the 9th OMS 67-70. I was in the second rotation to OL-8 with Col. Hayes. I was on the swing shift crewing #980; TSgt Brad Hornberg had days. When I made SSgt I became D Flight Team Leader. I was at OL-8 when a B-52 blew up on the runway with all its bombs tossed everywhere like popcorn. I can't remember many names but Phil DiVelo, Phil Sage ("that's Sgt Sage to you boy"). We had a great time on swing shift worked hard and played hard. Night games with TEB, burning footprints in the sand. Counting shock rings and the engine trim pad...I think they got 15 rings out of the AC. Awesome site in the dark. Well we had a great bunch of guys and it was a great time in my life. Like to hear from some of the guys.
Email Updated April 08, 2005
6 Feb 2000 19:08 SSgt Larry Webster Writes:
I came to Beale in April '67 and was assigned to trainer SSgt Bill Hughes which was a super trainer. He not only made me feel welcome but told me what needed to be done to get my next stripe. He made sure I followed through. He was responsible for a great four years (the best four of my life). Through his efforts in guiding me, I was promoted with minimum time and grade. He was also responsible for me making Squadron Airman of the Month and Wing Airman of the Month. I worked on preflight crews as well as BPO crews. I made assistant on #955 under MSgt Enick on third shift. MSgt Don Carey was controller. I also assisted on #958 and #960. At the time, SMSgt Bill Reynolds was a flight leader. I remember working for MSgt. Tucci, MSgt.
4 Feb 2000 10:39 MSgt Norman E. Bobb USAF (Ret.)
I was stationed at March AFB, when I learned about a need for my AFSC on a classified project at Beale AFB, so I volunteered. Of course, I tried to find out something, and even though I worked at HQ level, I couldn't find out anything. I got to Beale in July 65 and learned that I and six others would be going to
Norman E. Bobb USAF (Ret.)
1 Feb 2000 20:39 Major Donald R. Sopiak, USAFR
Started with the 9th RTS INOE 1976 and ended with INC 1988 as a mobilization augmentee at Beale and Dets 1, 2 and 4.
Between that and a Goodyear Rep I recognize many of the names here especially those in the intell and SAR end.
Great site, hope to see more names in the future.
Donald R. Sopiak USAFR Ret.
31 Jan 2000 06:39 SSgt Dennis R. Townsend
I have just been reading the updates to the site and it brought back a lot of good times that I had from 1970-`972 in B-Flight at Beale. Last night I rented a movie called Black Thunder. It had some pictures taken at Beale. Does any one out there know when this movie was done at Beale? Also in the last messages I have sent in, I had my wrong email address. It should be email@example.com. so if any one remembers me from Beale it me know.
27 Jan 2000 18:09 Sgt. Cliff Lawson Writes:
I just stumbled across your site. I was at Beale 05-73 to 12-74. 9th OMS.. T-38 section. I recognize many of the names in the comments I've read. I worked with TSgt. George Loya, and SSgt Lester Knox, along with a bunch of guys that I apologize for not being able to remember names. Served a TDY at Kadena 8-74 / 10-74. Sure seems a shame that the Blackbird was taken out of commission!
Best regards to all served!
23 Jan 2000 23:33 Matthew R. Moseley Writes:
GREAT SITE. The SR-71 has been a big part of my life, and a bigger part of my fathers that is for sure. My father is Frank R. Moseley and worked in 9th FMS shop (hydraulics) I believe from around 66 through to retirement in 80. I joined the army in the spring of 89 and was assigned the 82nd AIRBORNE
23 Jan 2000 18:38 CMSgt Kenneth Kesterson
Nice web page Leland. I was "Blue Feather" briefed in a vault at Offutt AFB NE in Dec 1964. We couldn't tell our families where we were going...but was encouraged to buy the local paper the next day cause President Johnson was about to make reference to this new airplane. A cadre of about 80 of us signed in at Beale in Jan 1965, where they had housing waiting for us. After unpacking the moving truck, three of us was on our way to
21 Jan 2000 15:59 MSgt (Ret) John G. Robley Writes:
What a time, what memories in cherish of the people and machines that to this day never cease to amaze me, so far ahead of its time. As the AGE Branch Chief I had the pleasure of working with all sections of FMS/AMS/OMS. The great times at Beale, Kadena, and others. The mission demands were there, and our well trained personnel came through and made the 9th a name to remember. You old AGE guys should remember when we got together and souped up the 330's from Buick's to 454 Chevy's? I still have some great pics of that. To my troops, wherever you may be now, THANKS, and aloha from
(Ret) John G. Robley
11 Jan 2000 21:33 A1C Wayne Palone Writes:
I was stationed at Beale AFB from Feb. 68 to Sept. 70. I was with 9th. FMS Fuel Sys. I started with the SR71 when it was still in testing, and remember when it went operational I went on OL8 in Nov. 69.
It was a plane I'll never forget. It was the best of times, It was the worst of times.
To all that were there with me, I still think of you guys, the good times, and the bad times.
5 Jan 2000 15:31 TSgt Steven "Bad" Appel Writes:
My name is Steven "BAD" Appel, I'm still in the Air Force and Stationed at Elmendorf AFB AK, my first and best air force experience was when I entered active duty and was stationed at Beale AFB CA in 1983. A lot of you will remember me because of my extraordinary ability to holler really loud and my Volkswagen bug hobby with Steve Koren. When I worked on the SR-71 83-87 I knew there was something easier than the SR-71 and probably more satisfying. When I got to RAF
P.S.......the SR-71 was the most exciting and rewarding.
Steven "Bad" Appel
1 Jan 2000 11:03 M/Sgt Gerald John Sardonia Writes:
I entered the blackbird family in April 1965 at Edwards AFB. Assigned to 4200 OET squadron. Helped out in May when the YF-12A set the records. Was NCOIC of the SAC EGRESS shop. Stayed there until March 1968 and then left for BEALE AFB. Was NCOIC of EGRESS shop at BEALE until I retired in March 1973. It was the greatest way to end almost 21 years of service. Would like to hear of any "Blackbird" reunions.
Do you meet the following criteria established to join the Blackbird Association?
1.You must have been Directly Associated with the SR-71, U-2 Programs. Being stationed where the Blackbirds were operational does not qualify. We have received numerous requests to join the Association by personnel that do not qualify, for example CBPO, Supply, Etc. Certainly these personnel contributed indirectly to the programs but remember the qualifications states: "Directly Associated".
2.The Blackbird Association is Not a Locator Service! Questions directed in this area will be ignored. If you wish to try and locate a former member you may search this page you are on to see if the individual has left a message.
3.When you contact Jack Madison the first time:
You MUST include "Blackbird Association Membership" in the subject line
Your Name and Affiliation with the Blackbirds (SR-71 or U-2).
Your Complete Home Mailing Address. Please insure the address is correct in all aspects. Sending just your E-Mail address is not sufficient.
Email you Blackbird Association application to:
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Select a Year above and it will take you to all E-mail's received for that year
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Copyright © 1996 Leland R. Haynes Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
"SR-71 Blackbirds" Web Site Navigator
First Created: April 15, 1996 - Last Revised: March 29, 2004
Copyright © 1996 Leland R. Haynes Email: email@example.com
Page #32 of "SR-71 Blackbirds"