Friday, 31 December 2010

By the Dawn's Early Light

Well it seems fitting that on the last day of 2010 I post images of the completed painting. I signed it yesterday, and so as far as I'm concerned it is finished.

By the Dawn’s Early Light
Oil on canvas 36” x24”

Three Phantom F-4B’s from VF-151 on an early morning mission over North Vietnam. NF 213 is piloted by John Chesire, with RIO George Healey in the rear.

NF 210 has Ted Triebel in the front seat and Dave Everett in the rear. Dave and Ted were shot down on August 27, 1972, on a photo escort mission over North Vietnam while flying 210, and spent the rest of the war as POW’s in the infamous Hanoi Hilton.
Dave recalls, ”Aside from the very occasional MiGCAP, the best hops a j.o. could draw were the armed recces in route pack 5/6 at first light -- targets of opportunity as mostly we defined them, hoping to catch those night trucks trying to squeeze in a few extra kilometers before parking under the trees for the day. (Don't think that scenario didn't occur to Ted and I when we were being trucked to Hanoi). RIP NF210 in a zillion pieces on a karst ridge in Thanh Hoa Province. Lost on one of those low altitude, go fast, flak magnet, Baby Giant photo escort missions, that we all came to enjoy, on 27 Aug over Phu Ly Bridge when all hell broke loose and luck petered out.

A Happy New Year to all, and let's see what 2011 brings - I see more F-4's, but also F-18s ;-)