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34th Tactical Fighter Squadron - Thud Era

Korat RTAFB, Thailand - May 1966 to May 1969

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If you wish to add an entry please use the Contact Page.
The entry will be reviewed and then posted on this page.

117 - Korat Service

Richard Conley:

Was stationed at Korat. 68-69 worked 2nd shift in the Jet Engine shop. PW J75P19w. Would like to contact my fellow mechanics.

Richard, Thank you for your service. Take care, Jack


116 - Hello

Tom Ferrell:

Just passing through. Nice site. We had some of your birds at Andrews AFB with the 113th TFW. Loved the sound of the Thud in the overhead pattern. We then went to laser designator modded F-4D then F-16A/B/C/D. I was a crew chief on them.

Tom, Thanks for your service. The Thud sound was unique. Take care, Jack


115 - Ryan's Raider Ben Pollard, gone west

David Piontek:

I am a fellow Veteran (1980's era F-14 RIO) and belong to several Veteran aviator groups in San Diego, which Ben also belonged to. I am sad to report that Ben passed away at his home in San Diego this past Veteran's Day, November 11, 2016. A Memorial Service is being held this coming Friday, December 2, 2016, at 10:30am at the Rancho Bernardo Community Presbyterian Church, 17010 Pomerado Rd in San Diego, CA 92128.

David, Thank you for your service. And thanks for letting us know about the Memorial Service. Take care, Jack


113 - Squadron Painter

SSgt Mike Jarosz: cc acft 61-0220,

What I really meant was I was the squadron nose artist/painter.

Mike, Thank you for your service and some nice art work. Take care, Jack


112 - Crew Chief 67 / 68

Paul Witek:

I realize that many great guys served at Korat but I will admit that working on the F105 was the best experience I ever had. I started with the Thunderchief at Nellis AFB. I have worked on many types of aircraft but the Thunderchief was the best in my eyes. I was lucky enough to have crewed JJ 555. Thanks for the page it is great to bring back memories after all these years.

Paul, Thank you for your service. It was a great aircraft. Take care, Jack


111 - Memories of the 34th TFS

Dennis Gurnee., Msgt Retire 96:

Jack, I launched you several times during July of 1967 when I first arrived in country. And of course, I was at the festivities on the ramp when you returned from your 100th mission. Being a young first term airman I really did grasp the significance of that entire year, I just rolled with the flow and enjoyed it quietly. Only now, at near 70 years old do I appreciate that segment of my 30 year career. I am so thankful for that long, very long year that now that I think about it, went by so fast. The friendships I had, the experiences, all are memories that seem to be getting fuzzier everyday. Then reading all the post on this guest book and the many 105 groups on FB refreshes my memory banks daily. Within the last few months I started my own group on FB, "The Thai Connection~F105 Style" Our group is small but growing fast. When I left Korat and returned to the CONUS I stayed in the AF until 69 than left to join the Kansas Air Guard at McConnell so I could once again work on my beloved THUD's and I stay there until 96. Still check this guestbook weekly to renew my connection. Was an Honor to have Served with You Sir. Great Group and Web site.

Thank you for your service Dennis. I will be in touch by email. Take care, Jack


110 - Tribute to W. Robert "Bob" McDaniel

William Paul Waits:

Thank you for this site to honor our brave Vietnam pilots. Bob McDaniel was my neighbor in Dickinson, and a deer hunting buddy. Bob taught me to fly. Bob was a great man who loved his country and honored the men he served with. Many of the stories Bob related regarding missions into Northern Laos and North Vietnam (during the Paris Peace talks) made me appreciate what a difficult and dangerous job these pilots endured. Bob also told a few stories of the "Jolly Green Giant" pilot extraction crews sent in to recover downed pilots - what a dangerous and most appreciated job. Bob said the Thud pilots would fight to buy these helicopter crewmen bar drinks. Bob shared a story of how the pilots almost had an opportunity to drop a bomb on Hanoi Jane; however, Washington refused to clear the mission which would fly near her. I honor each of the men listed in this website and the job they did in SE Asia. Our Vietnam Vets coming home from war did not receive the heroes welcome they richly deserved..

Thank you for the nice tribute. Take care, Jack


109 - Comment

Tom Bell:

I began my 68-69 tour at Korat as crew Chief in the 34th TFS however as they began to convert to the F4C I was transferred to the 44th. I live with the knowledge that I was the last person to talk face to face with several brave and committed fighter pilots who failed to return from their last combat mission. God bless them and all the men and women who proudly served.
Thanks, Dr. Tom Bell, SSGT 44th TFS, PACAF

Tom, Thank you for your service. Take care, Jack


108 - Thank You


Firstly, thank you for keeping these memories alive. I'm sure it means a great deal to all the families involved. Secondly, I'm trying to find some information about a pilot that may have been part of this Squadron during 1967 to 1968. His name, Thomas W.C. Birge, is mentioned a few times under certain individuals histories but I can't find more than that. Any direction or help you could provide is greatly appreciated.
Thank you again. Thomas

Thomas, Thanks for your entry and nice comments. Good luck, Jack


107 - A-10 Invitation

Scott Plakyda:

Hello, my name is Scott Plakyda and I'm an A-10 pilot based out of Whiteman AFB. Our squadron is going to Hill AFB for TDY from 29 March to 9 April. I, as well as the squadron, are very interested in combat aviation history. In my opinion, there was no more dangerous mission than what the F-105 did in Vietnam. I have read several books about the Thud in combat and we would love to meet a real 105 driver with combat experience. We will be at Hill AFB during that time period, but spending the weekend of 31 Mar-3 Apr at Park City. We would be honored if at any time and any place during that time period we could meet up with any Thud pilot(s) that still live in the Salt Lake area. You would be invited to see what the A-10 is about, get a walk around, sit in the cockpit, share war stories, and have some food and drinks. We would love to hear how air combat and CSAR has changed, or stayed the same, over the years. If any of you guys live in or are visiting the Kansas City area, you would be more than welcome to visit our squadron and fly in our simulators. You can contact me either this email or cell 816-519-8504. Also, if you know of anyone else that I can contact about meeting up, I would appreciate their contact info as well.

Thanks for your service and for reading this. Hopefully we can make this work and meet some real-life heroes that we read about.
Respectfully, Scott Placed

Hi Scott, Thank you for the invitation and for your service also. Take care, Jack

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