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Bob Shaw was in VF-1485 with me while he was writing his seminal ACM Book: Fighter Combat Maneuvering
Best of Both Worlds
During my extended reserve active duty in Kingsville TX, a number of changes had occurred at Continental Airlines. Following Texas Air's hostile takeover of Continental, Frank Lorenzo took the airline into bankruptcy, so he could throw out all the labor contracts. He then cut pay by 50%. The pilots along with all other labor groups struck the airline.
The Continental pilots were still on strike when I came off extended active duty from the Navy. Although I had been recalled off furlough to active service with Continental, I unquestionably honored and joined the pilot picket lines. Meanwhile, I was very fortunate to be selected to fly with VF-1485, the F-14 reserve augment unit at NAS Miramar.
Our unit was made up of some of the finest. It included bankers, authors, test pilots, lawyers, entrepreneurs, airline pilots, ranchers, and engineers. We all shared extensive F-14 experience, a love of flying, and a sense of dedication.
We followed a training syllabus that kept us proficient in all areas of F-14 tactical employment. We also augmented the active duty F-14 RAG - VF-124 - flying training missions for their students. And most importantly and enjoyable, we kept our edge as fighter pilots, flying many hours of ACM.
It was an excellent experience, flying as an airline pilot during the week, then rejoining all my old fighter pilot friends for a weekend of flying and fighting the F-14. For a few years it truly was, the best of both worlds.
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