The Cornfield Bomber

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posted on Oct, 24 2013 @ 10:15 AM
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On Feb 2, 1970 a flight of four F-106s were scheduled to depart Malmstrom AFB, including F-106A 58-0787 flown by Captain Gary Foust for 2 v 2 ACM training. During preparation for departure, one of the aircraft, flown by Larry McBride suffered a drag chute deployment. The flight continued as a three ship, 2 v 1.

During ACM, the solo F-106, flown by Tom Curtis, merged with the two, taking on Captain Foust. He forced the fight vertical, into a vertical rolling scissors. During the vertical portion of the flight, he forced Capt Foust to perform a high G rudder reversal at around 38,000 feet, which led to post stall gyrations, and eventually to a stall. After the aircraft stalled it entered a left hand flat spin.

A flat spin in an F-106 is almost impossible to recover from, but Capt Foust tried everything, including activating take-off trim (this comes into play later). As he passed through 15,000 feet, per the book, his wingman urged him to eject, as there was no sign of the aircraft slowing the spin.

Immediately after Capt Foust ejected, 0787 recovered to a wings level position, and flew out of sight, apparently under perfect control. His wingman is reported to have said over the radio after it recovered, "Gary, you better get back in!"

A little while later, Major Wolford, the Chief of Maintenance of the 71st FIS received a call from a local sheriff that there was a fighter sitting in a wheat field, engine running, and they wanted to know how to shut it off.

A depot team from Sacramento came in, and removed the wings, and transported the entire aircraft by train to the depot (Major Wolford wanted to fly it out, but the belly damage was too severe). After a time in the depot, the aircraft was returned to service, until its retirement to the Air Force Museum where it can be seen today.

www.f-106deltadart.com...





posted on Oct, 24 2013 @ 11:07 AM
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reply to post by Zaphod58
 


Very cool, Beeblebrox! This is one of those storys you never expect to hear turn out ok. If one entered a stall and was seemingly unrecoverable, forcing ejection, one would conclude immediate crash, not for the plane to self correct and fly on out to some wheat field
S&F for a good story sir



posted on Oct, 25 2013 @ 05:46 AM
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reply to post by Zaphod58
 


Amazing story, the jet just wasn't ready to die.

I'm assuming it was the aerodynamic drag of no canopy and the lightened weight in the nose that allowed it to self recover?



posted on Oct, 25 2013 @ 08:16 AM
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reply to post by Sammamishman
 


Most likely. That and the fact that he set it to take off trim during the spin.



posted on Oct, 25 2013 @ 11:52 AM
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reply to post by Zaphod58
 


That is fascinating, like the previous poster said , is bet the open cockpit had a lot to do with it righting itself.
I grew up watching the 106's at the local ANG base in those days you could walk right up to the fence and be only fifty feet from the engine test bay.
I believe the the squadron was one of the last if not the last to fly them operationally. They went to F4s in the mid /late 70s then F16s in the 80's. What's weird is that they are flying F18s and 16s now, and next year they go to F15s.



posted on Nov, 4 2013 @ 06:59 AM
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Incredible story, thanks for sharing! i have always loved these jets !




 
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