F-86 aircraft static display dedication 11am this morning Friday Sept. 7

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Delaware Air National Guard
Headquarters, 166th Airlift Wing
2600 Spruance Drive
New Castle, DE 19720-1615 

About 250 people expected to attend -- 150 retirees and 100 Airmen on duty

News media are invited to any or all events, but are requested to call ahead; the F-86 dedication at 11:00 a.m. sharp will have the best visual elements and a C-130 flyover at approximately 11:15 a.m.

Three of the four daughters of former 142nd Fighter Interceptor Squadron Commander, Lt. Col. David McCallister, will be on hand. The F-86 aircraft is named Cindee Lind 9th after the two eldest daughters, Cindy and Linda. Daughters Merle Werely, Debra Mezza and Linda Stendback will be on base. Daughter Dr. Cindy McCallister is in California and unable to attend.

Contact: Tech. Sgt. Benjamin Matwey
Public Affairs Specialist, 166th Airlift Wing
Cell 302-593-2126, or office 302-323-3369
E-mail: Benjamin.Matwey@denewc.ang.af.mil
Release No. 2007-09-001 
Sept. 5, 2007


NEW CASTLE, Delaware - Three special events occur Friday morning Sept. 7, 2007 at the air base in New Castle to celebrate and recognize the people and aircraft who are the heritage of the Delaware Air National Guard.

All occur at Headquarters, Delaware Air National Guard, 2600 Spruance Drive, New Castle, DE 19720.

First, starting 8:00 a.m., 150 retirees assemble in the base dining facility for the Delaware Air Guard 12th Annual Retirees' breakfast, and view a short film of unit F-86 aircraft in flight.

Second, at 9:40 a.m. on the airport tarmac we have a Camp Honoree Ceremony and unveil the name of a former member, retired Lt. Col. Joseph W. Lanahan, painted on the side of a unit C-130 aircraft. Col. Lanahan served 38 years in the military, the last 26 of those years with the Delaware Air National Guard. His career began in 1965 as an F-84 jet mechanic. He then served as a radar intercept officer, and as a navigator in C-97 and C-130 aircraft. He was Commander of the 142nd Tactical Airlift Squadron and deputy commander for maintenance. He retired in 1991.

Third, at 11:00 a.m. we unveil the first mounted static display aircraft in our 61-year unit history. We dedicate an F-86H fighter aircraft static display that was mounted Aug. 22 next to our base entrance, with additional work performed over the last two weeks on the mounting structure to ensure safety, and on the aircraft fuselage to improve the appearance of the aircraft.

Weather permitting; a C-130 aircraft will perform a flyover during the F-86 dedication.
Former pilots, maintenance personnel and crew chiefs of the unit's F-86 and Korean War era will be on hand. Fighter aircraft were flown at the Delaware Air National Guard during the Korean War era, and several dozen Airmen from the Delaware Air National Guard were individually mobilized for duty in the Korean War, which lasted from 1950-1953.

This particular F-86H aircraft was in use at the base from 1957 until it was retired in 1962. It is named "Cindee Lind 9th" after the two oldest daughters (Cindee and Linda) of Lt. Col. David F. McCallister, the former commander of the 142nd Fighter Interceptor Squadron. The F-86H was the last in the Sabre series. It featured a larger and heavier aircraft, and an improved engine with 50 percent more thrust. It was armed with four 20 millimeter canons with a high rate of fire. Only 475 F-86H aircraft were built.

For the last 45 years the "Cindee Lind" has been a static ground display aircraft at New Castle County Airport.

A tornado in September 2004 severely damaged the aircraft. In May 2005 the aircraft was disassembled and moved to Georgetown, Delaware for repairs. Numerous sheet metal repairs were made to the wings and fuselage. The canopy was replaced and some of the flight surfaces underwent major repairs. Major corrosion issues that were out of sight were treated. As adapter plate was custom made and installed in the center wing box area to support the aircraft when mounted. The aircraft was completely stripped of point, acid etched, primed and repainted, with new striping and decals applied.

She is finally back in the air with her landing gears up and locked, completing one final mission. She is guided by the vivid memories of all the courageous pilots that once flew her. She continues to stand tall and proud with the built-in heritage formed by the sweat and tears of the many mechanics that once cared for and maintained her.

Almost every active duty Air Force base in the country has at least one mounted static display aircraft, and many Air National Guard bases have one.

This release is in the public domain, and any part may be used as written. 

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