Warplanes: Incident in a Small Town

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July 2, 2006: On a recent evening, a StrategyPage contributor was chowing down in a certain excellent pit beef joint in a small town in central Texas, about 100 miles from Fort Hood. About half way through the brisket, ribs, sausages, and sides, two warrant officers in the new issue camouflage wandered in, to be greeted in such as way as to indicate that they were steady customers. The two were soon digging in to the establishment's fine eats.

Wandering over for a chat, the intrepid StrategyPage correspondent soon learned that they were Apache pilots on a routine training mission. Their training schedule mandated a certain mix of daylight and night flying hours. To squeeze the maximum benefit out of their flight time, they routinely would fly the prescribed daylight training course, then, toward evening, with fuel beginning to get low, would park their chopper at the local airport, and hitch a ride into town for some good chow. By the time their meal was finished and they had returned to the airport, darkness would have fallen and their chopper refueled, so that they could execute the night portion of their training.

 


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