Posts By Frank & Gijs & Hans
Denmark had one squadron of Thunderflashes that were phased out in 1971 in favour of the recce version of the Saab Draken. Initially 729 squadron at Karup received 10 Thunderflashes, but in 1963 they received 7 (ex Air National Guard) more as attrition replacements.
The USAF of course used the Thunderflash in largest numbers : after all it was an American design ! The last U.S . RF-84F Thunderflash flew with 173rd TRS of the Nebraska ANG; this unit converted to the RF-4C Phantom in 1972.
In the mid fifties the KLu (Koninklijke Luchtmacht) acquired 180 Republic F-84F Thunderstreaks, registered P-101 to P-277 and P-298 to P-300. The majority of the Streaks depicted in this album are selected out of the range P-157 to P-300, being the last of the type in operational service, flying with both 314 and 315 squadrons from Eindhoven AB. The Streak entered service in 1955 and the last ones were phased out in 1970. Last departures to other air forces (see below) took place in 1971.
The Italian Thunderflashes were based at Villafranca, in northern Italy. The 78 Italian aircraft started entering AMI service in 1956, equipping the 3rd Aerobrigata (Wing), replacing RF-84G Thunderjets. The 3rd Wing made a conversion to the RF-104G Starfighter in 1970.
We have seen the Thunderstreaks of the Belgian Air Force very frequently, both in operational conditions , in storage and/or as museum-pieces. This post deals with pictures of Thunderstreaks in Belgian Air Force service, while they still were operational.
Greece started receiving their first Thunderflashes in 1957, when 348 squadron (Mira) was formed at Larissa. The initial batch was augmented in 1964 by a number of ex Netherlands and German Air Force examples. In Greece the Thunderflashes were replaced by RF-4C Phantoms.
|No 306 Sqn KLu received its first RF 84 Thunderflash at RAF Laarbruch on 4 April 1956. The squadron was posted to Laarbruch from 8 Nov 1954 till 15 Jan 1958 when they moved to Deelen.|
In their early days they wore a silver livery with the 306 squadron-code (TP-) on the nose; in later years they were camouflaged and subsequently their P- registration was added.