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‘Ghost’ aggressor F-16 unveiled

Photo: The new 'Ghost' F-16C takes off from Nellis AFM on May 23. USAF/SSgt Tabatha McCarthy

 

The US Air Force’s 64th Aggressor Squadron (AGRS) has unveiled its new F-16C scheme, known as the ‘Ghost’. The aircraft (serial 84-220) took to the air for the first time in its new colors on May 23.

The design was chosen by a clever social media poll held by Brig Gen Rob Novotny, the 57th Wing commander, on his social media account to add a new look to the 64th AGRS.

‘I love this job, and I love what we do at Nellis Air Force Base, so I want to take any opportunity to boast about our fine men and women who do great work for their nation,’ said Novotny. ‘Social Media gives me a chance to connect directly with the folks who have a similar passion for military aviation.’ The scheme is based on one of the digital camouflage schemes worn by a Russian Su-57 ‘Frazor’.

Peter Mossudo and Troy Blaschko, both 57th Maintenance Group Mission First (M1) aircraft painters, place masking for stenciling on an F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter jet inside the corrosion shop on Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., May 16, 2019. USAF/A1C Bryan Guthrie

Once the poll was concluded, the idea of the ‘Ghost’ jet was handed off to the Mission First (M1) crew at the corrosion shop to make it a reality. ‘We want a good product just like the commander does,’ said Troy Blaschko, an aircraft painter with M1 assigned to the 57th Maintenance Group. ‘It means just as much to us as it does to the pilots and we’re really glad to be a part of it.’

The project started on April 22 once the F-16 was towed into the corrosion shop from Viper Aircraft Maintenance Unit (AMU). With a seven-man team on days and a six-man team on swings for M1, the jet was finished in just under one month. Once the jet was finished, it was towed back to Viper AMU and back in the hands of its crew chief.

‘It’s quite an honor [being the crew chief for the ‘Ghost’ jet],’ said MSgt Corey Cain, 926 AMXS dedicated crew chief.

A full feature on the 64th AGRS will appear in the forthcoming July issue of Combat Aircraft, including an interview with Brig Gen Novotny. To ensure you never miss an issue, why not check out our attractive subscription options for print and digital versions of the magazine: https://combataircraft.keypublishing.com/subscribe/

USAF

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