Clyde A. Benjamin



Preferred Name: 
Clyde

Nickname/Call Sign: Gandhi

Date of Birth: May 1, 1933

Highest Military Grade Held: Captain, O3

Hometown: Butte, MT

Biography

I flew the F-100A at Nellis.  I reported into Willy (Williams AFB, AZ) after completing basic flying school at Webb AFB in Big Springs, Texas.  After 3 days at Willy, I was transferred to Nellis as an experimental student to determine if pilots could go directly from T-33 to F-100, bypassing the F-86.

They did the same thing for Luke pilots that were flying the F-84.  All told, I think there were about 6 people that went thru this program.  The F-100F had just entered the inventory, so that was the airplane that we used for transition.  After checkout in the F-100F, we flew the F-100A and completed the gunnery program at Nellis.

My next assignment was back to Willy to fly the F-86 and continue the gunnery and transition into that airplane.  At the conclusion of that training, we went to operational units and flew the F-100D & F at George.  I guess that the experiment worked as future classes went directly from pilot training, T-33, to F-100 at Luke.  I think that was the death knoll for Willy, as all fighter pilots were vectored to Luke, and Willy closed.

Units Assigned

  • 1957-1960 309th Fighter Day Squadron/31st Tactical Fighter Wing, George AFB, CA (F-100 D/F)
  • 1960 474th Fighter Day Squadron/413th Fighter-Day Wing, George AB, CA (F-100 D/F)

Awards & Decorations

Flight Info

T-33
F-86
F-100 A/D/F

Military Education

Civilian Education

1956 BSIE, Montana State College – Bozeman, MT

Biography

Biography

I flew the F-100A at Nellis.  I reported into Willy (Williams AFB, AZ) after completing basic flying school at Webb AFB in Big Springs, Texas.  After 3 days at Willy, I was transferred to Nellis as an experimental student to determine if pilots could go directly from T-33 to F-100, bypassing the F-86.

They did the same thing for Luke pilots that were flying the F-84.  All told, I think there were about 6 people that went thru this program.  The F-100F had just entered the inventory, so that was the airplane that we used for transition.  After checkout in the F-100F, we flew the F-100A and completed the gunnery program at Nellis.

My next assignment was back to Willy to fly the F-86 and continue the gunnery and transition into that airplane.  At the conclusion of that training, we went to operational units and flew the F-100D & F at George.  I guess that the experiment worked as future classes went directly from pilot training, T-33, to F-100 at Luke.  I think that was the death knoll for Willy, as all fighter pilots were vectored to Luke, and Willy closed.

Units - Education - Awards - Flight Info

Units Assigned

  • 1957-1960 309th Fighter Day Squadron/31st Tactical Fighter Wing, George AFB, CA (F-100 D/F)
  • 1960 474th Fighter Day Squadron/413th Fighter-Day Wing, George AB, CA (F-100 D/F)

Awards & Decorations

Flight Info

T-33
F-86
F-100 A/D/F

Military Education

Civilian Education

1956 BSIE, Montana State College – Bozeman, MT

Photos