Its been a while since I've been out to Luke. Was assigned there from '93 to '96, but I'm not much on revisiting the past. But the wife worked there too as a civilian handling their public relations until a couple years ago. She still has more connections there than I do and wrangled a VIP invite to the Commander's Hospitality Tent right on show center. We invited some friends along and took a long stroll down memory lane.
While at Luke back in the day I commanded the 62nd Fighter Squadron, the Spikes. Was fun to talk to they guy that currently has the call sign Spike 1. He's doing a great job with my old squadron which will transition to the new F-35 soon. Even got to hang out with the squadron flagship that used to bear my name painted on the canopy rail. She and I both are showing some age, but we can still kick it into afterburner when we need to.
Our little group strolled along the flight line for a while with me reliving some old war stories and answering questions here and there. The kids wearing the uniform these days look so young. Was I ever that young?
Sipped cold drinks in the VIP tent and watched the Thunderbirds thrill everyone with their precision.
Stopped off at Gordon Beirsch for brews and more war stories. Was fun, but now we return to our currently scheduled program.
Take a look at the photoset if you’re curious about:
Airplanes - Military and civilian
Brand new F-35 fighters and vintage WW II bombers and fighters
Huge tankers and cargo planes
Planes painted bright and even brighter colors
Planes that go supersonic
Planes that can fly backwards and can takeoff straight up
Two types of military planes that crashed into the Superstitions
Parachuters with American flags bigger than them
Planes with Nose Art
2 military jets that I personally flew (a long time ago)
I had a fun day ‘hiking’ up and down the flight line at Luke AFB today.
The large crowd of attendees were treated to an excellent mix of state-of-the-art fighter jets, WW II vintage bombers and fighters, plus many privately owned military and civilian planes.
I have a bit of knowledge about most of the planes on display, which makes it even more enjoyable when talking to the pilots.
Each plane on display had its pilot standing-by, proudly explaining their plane’s specifics and answering questions. I was fortunate enough to be one of those pilots many years ago, standing by a military jet and promoting how excellent it was. It was alot of fun.
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.