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Det-1 at George AFB

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The Det. was located at the approach end of Rwy 21 at VCV. When I first started pulling alert there Roy Stuckey was the C.O. He had a great crew working for him. It was about a 30 min. trip from FAT and just a couple of minutes over to EDW. Heading north to R-2508 you could be ready for "Fight's On" in about ten minutes. Beat the heck out of 20 minutes to the water from FAT. One of my first Det. tours was to fly a jet down Friday afternoon and relieve John Kaser, our Ops Officer at the time. We got the swap done and John took off on Rwy 21. Since it was a Friday and all of the F-4s were done flying Grinder and I watched as he did a 180 and came back down Rwy 03 at - well, low. With the burner cooking even the concrete on the ramp was vibrating as he went right overhead. It was GREAT! Once he was on his way we went back inside and the phone was ringing. It was the VCV Wing Commander. The conversation went something like this: (Next Panel) "Det-1, Lt. Yelton"
"This is General So-and-So (I don't remember his name, but he was a dick) and I want to speak to your Ops Officer at Fresno."
"Yessir, His name is Lt. Col. John Kaser and his number is PBX extension XXX. But if you'd like to talk to him you might want to wait about 45 minutes before you call."
"Why's that Lieutenant?"
"Well sir, he just left here in an F-106."
Next thing I heard was - "SLAM, click"
I really love screwing with guys like that.
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The flying out of the Det. was fun! When we weren't flying, over in hanger #1 we had a nice pool table, a shuffle board table and a decent weight set. At night we had movies on film. You had to change the reels and then rewind them. The food was pretty decent, too. It was a great place to get caught up on your sleep if you weren't paired up with J.C. Clark (F-4 WSO) :) I wonder how many boots he got chucked at his head in the middle of the night. Hey Grinder, remember watching Night of the Comet? - one of the worst movies ever made. It was right up there with Killer Clowns From Outerspace. Some of my best memories of the Det. were sitting in one of the hangers with the doors open and just listening to Jan Pedersen playing his mandolin. Jan was one of the best musicians I've ever seen. He could play just about any instrument by ear. Amazing talent! Did anyone ever actually see the Ghost of Hanger 4? Watch out for the Mojave Greens!
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B.O.B. sent in this aerial shot of the Det. at George AFB. The end of RWY 21 is just off to the right. Three pay days for the alert tour, plus two standby days to boot. Not bad, eh?