F-20 Tigershark – Warbird Wednesday Episode #118

Welcome to Warbird Wednesday! Today we’re visiting what could be considered the best fighter designed but never built, the F-20 Tigershark. Development of the F-20 began in 1975 to combat the latest Soviet fighter aircraft. Evolving from the F-5E Tiger II, the Tigershark was faster, had better avionics, and had capability beyond visual range air-to-air. Three prototypes of the Tigershark…

Robert Ashby

Bob Ashby enlisted in the Army Air Corps at age 17 as a candidate for the Aviation Cadet program. He was called to active duty in August 1944. Bob was assigned to Keesler Field, Mississippi, for basic training and testing for entry into the Aviation Cadet Program. In December 1944, Ashby was sent to Tuskegee, Alabama, to begin cadet training.    At Tuskegee, he…

EA-18 Growler – Warbird Wednesday Episode #117

Welcome to Warbird Wednesday! Today we’re joined by two special guests from the Naval Air Weapons Station in China Lake as we visit the EA-18G Growler. The EA-18 Growler is a carrier-based electronic warfare aircraft and one of the newest aircraft in the Navy Fleet. This Airborne Electronic Attack aircraft combines the latest electronic attack technology including jamming pods, communication…

Capt. Freddie E. Hutchins

Freddie Hutchins of Donaldsonville, GA, graduated from flight training on April 29, 1943, at Tuskegee Army Air Field in Alabama. In December, he deployed to Italy with the 302nd Fighter Squadron, part of the 332nd Fighter Group. The 302nd Fighter Squadron flew its first combat mission on February 5, 1944.   Hutchins scored his first aerial victory on July 26, 1944,…

Paul Lehman

Paul David Lehman, Jr. was born on October 4, 1922. He enlisted in the United States Army in Los Angeles, California in November of 1942. He opted for aviation cadet training and quickly found himself on a train heading to Tuskegee, Alabama. Moton Field and Tuskegee Army Airfield were the focal points for the training of African-American military pilots, navigators,…

F-35 Lightning II – Warbird Wednesday Episode #116

Welcome to Warbird Wednesday! Today we’re visiting a multi-role combat aircraft, the F-35 Lightning II. The F-35 is the apex of American advanced fighter design right now and is the most lethal, survivable and connected fighter aircraft in the world. Intended to perform both air superiority and strike missions, the F-35 provides electronic warfare and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance capabilities.…

Charles Alfred Anderson, Part 2

In 1941, the Tuskegee Institute Board of Directors decided to construct an improved airfield to enable more students to train for and obtain their pilot’s licenses. To do this, $200,000 would be needed to build the runway and facilities.    One of the entities contacted as a possible source for funding was the Julius Rosenwald Fund of Chicago, where Eleanor…

Charles Alfred Anderson, Part 1

As a young boy, Charles Alfred Anderson was fascinated by airplanes and knew he just had to fly. By the time he was 20, he had saved enough money for flying lessons; however, no one would teach a young black man to fly. Not deterred, Anderson attended aviation ground school, where he learned airplane mechanics, and spent time around airports,…

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