Posts By Frank & Gijs & Hans
This gallery deals with the Thunderstreaks that once flew with the Greek Air Force. Most pictures were taken when Frank and Hans were invited to visit the Greek AFB Larissa to report on the Best Hit Meet in 1972: after a lot of asking we were allowed to picture some operational aircraft of 344 squadron that were based here at Larissa.
In ITALY the Thunderstreaks equipped 8 air force squadrons: 5th at Rimini, 6th at Ghedi, 8th at Cervia, 36th at Goia del Colle, 50th at Piacenza and the 51st at Istrana. Some Streaks were kept in service till 1972 when the 50th squadron at Piacenza was re-equipped with the F-104S Starfighter.
After their operational service about 30 Streaks were temporarily used as eye-catchers (“decoys”) at air-bases of the KLu: about 4 aircraft were present at each airfield. They were removed and scrapped in 1980.
In this gallery you will find a selection of the pictures we took in the course of years when specific phased out aircraft were still around. Most aircraft have since then been removed for scrap .
In 1966 the Royal Netherlands Air Force acquired five Alouette III helicopters from the French Sud Aviation-factory (nowadays : Aerospatale ) especially for use in the Search And Rescue-role (S.A.R.).
In June 1969 we all three visited the Internationale Vliegmeeting at Bierset AB, Belgium, home of the 42nd recce squadron; the open days & air show took place on two days , namely 20 and 21 June 1969 and among the many interesting aircraft to be seen there was a significant U.S.Navy delegation.
Between 1959 and 1966 the Turkish Air Force received nearly 300 second handed Thunderstreaks from France, Germany and the Netherlands, with which they equipped 9 squadrons.The Streaks were kept in service till 1974; the last units to fly the F-84F were nos 131 and 132 squadron based at Konya. The Turks replaced their Thunderstreaks by Northrop F-5s and subsequently scrapped nearly all of them.
The 1978 Tiger Meet was held at Kleine Brogel AB (Belgium) from 19-26 June. Participating were the air arms of 10 different countries including Norway, Greece and Portugal. On 23 June KB was open to the public and on Saturday 24 June the 31 squadron ‘Tiger’ area was open to the public. We all three visited the event.
The Airshow at Brustem AB in 1968 , attended by the three of us ,was a very special event: new at the time were the green/brown colour schemes introduced by the BAF on (some of )their fighter- and training aircraft-types . The fact that the USAF showed no less than five century fighters was a bonus as well!