Bill Rippy was a member of the 1954 Far East Air Force Special Weapons Gunnery Team and participated in the First Air Force All Jet Gunnery Meet as a 2ND LT. He was also the right wing of the short-lived “Sacrojet” Aerobatic team, at Turner AFB in 1956 (until the Sec. of Air Force commanded all teams but the Thunderbirds to cease and desist).
He dead-sticked two F-84s and ejected from one in the traffic pattern, all within a 6 month period at Turner AFB, GA. Rippy flew 267 combat missions in Vietnam and “to top it all off, I believe I had the distinct privilege of giving one of our greatest fighter jocks, B/Gen. Robin Olds, his last Air Force instrument flight check while still at the Academy. I could be wrong on the “last” check, but I think he was assigned to Norton AFB a few months after I left the Academy.”