Charles D. “Kermit” Beverly (78) July 16, 1932 – Oct 17, 2019. He flew with the 309 TFS George AFB, CA and the 81 TFS Hahn AB, Germany and F-4’s in Vietnam.
Flying combat in Kermits words: “We were covering a rescue mission just in Vietnam north of the of the DMZ around a place called Dong Hoi. I had a flight of four F-4’s and it was our job to first make sure no enemy aircraft came into the area, then to suppress the enemy fire or at least draw the fire from our Jolly Green so he could go in to pull out our downed pilot. When we had expended our ordnance we still did not have the pilot out. I took the flight into Chew Li, a Marine F-4 base, which was closest to where we were operating. There we could get a hot tum-around. A hot turn around is where you sit in the aircraft with your engines running and they plug the refueling hose in and refuel you while the armors reload you with ordnance. They could fuel and arm a flight of four in thirty minutes. I could be back at Dong Hoi within an hour. Pretty impressive. While waiting for our fuel and arms the crew chief would, with the aid of a long forked stick, pass a large plastic cup of water up to you- the cockpit in the F-4 was about ten feet off the ground. This was greatly appreciated. After you drank as much water as you wanted you would relieve yourself in the cup and pass it back to the crew chief who then disposed of the cup. This service, too, was greatly appreciated. When a month or so later I took an F-4 back into Chew Li to give a briefing, I was met at the aircraft by a couple of officers from one of the Marine F-4 squadrons. I left my GIB with the aircraft for the Marines were renown for their opportunism. An unguarded Air Force F-4 on the ramp was just like Santa’s sled sitting out there- all kinds of goodies to be had. I had parked my aircraft on the refueling pits because I was scheduled to depart in two hours. As we headed for Operations, we walked past the hot tum-around area. I noticed on the Crew Chiefs rack two holders with one cup in each holder. One holder marked A/C (Aircraft Commander), the other marked GIB (Guy in the backseat). I did just as you are doing- I laughed but none of the others laughed. They asked what I was laughing at; I said, “only two cups, that is a good joke.” “What’s the joke,” they asked?