Nearly 70 F-15Es Take To Sky In Same Time
Airmen from the 4th Fighter Wing came together to honor their heritage by launching nearly 70 F-15E Strike Eagles in a Turkey Shoot training mission April 16.
The nearly 70 Strike Eagles taxied one after the next simultaneously down the base flightline before heading to bombing ranges across North Carolina to destroy more than 1,000 targets. The purpose of this mass launch was two-fold.
"This F-15E Strike package and Turkey Shoot honored the excellence and sacrifices of our Wing's past while 'flexing' 4th FW airpower today, sharpening our warfighting spirit and skills as we look toward the future," said Col. Patrick Doherty, 4th FW commander.
The term Turkey Shoot dates back to a mission that took place June 19, 1944 during World War II.
Nearly 70 F-15E Strike Eagles of the 4th Fighter Wing performed an “Elephant Walk” during a Turkey Shoot training mission on Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., on Apr. 16, 2012: a contingent larger than a mid-size European air force and a “show of force” even more impressive than the one organised at Kunsan air base on Mar. 6 to send a message a Kim Jong-un in anticipation of the (failed) ballistic missile test.
The wing, with aircrews assigned to the 333rd, 334th, 335th, and 336th Fighter Squadrons, generated about 70 sorties to destroy more than 1,000 targets on bombing ranges across the state, to commemorate the 4th’s victory over the Luftwaffe on Apr. 16, 1945.
The term Turkey Shoot dates back to a mission that took place Jun. 19, 1944 during WWII: on this day U.S. Navy aircraft carrier downed 373 Japanese planes with the loss of only 23 American planes and, according to the 4th FW historian Dr. Roy Heidicker, a Navy pilot who participated in this mission was attributed as saying “It was like a turkey shoot”.
While supporting the war effort the 4th FG destroyed more enemy aircraft than any group or wing in Air Force history and the 4th FW carry
“We proudly carry on the legacy of the 4th FG’s victories, as well as those of the wing’s Korean, Vietnam, Gulf War efforts and believe it is critically important that current and future generations of Airmen understand and celebrate our history, so they can visualize what they will be capable of doing in the future,” Col. Patrick Doherty, 4th FW commander said in the press release published on the SJ website.
Source: 16 April 2011 - dailyairforce News & theaviationist.com
Photo: Nearly 70 F-15E Strike Eagles in largest Elephant Walk to date. (Photo by U.S. Air Force)