James R. Alley
J.R. has some real kudos in his flying career. If you ask him he’ll tell you that as far as he knows, he’s the only known person to have ejected from the back and the front seat of an F-89s (both at night). And he was more than disappointed about not getting a follow-on F-100 assignment from UPT, especially with being the number one graduate of his entire class 61-D (Daedalian Award). J.R. was also the only USAFE F-4 pilot to compete in two AFCENT Tac Wpns Competitions.
In his second flying career he had 19 years flying T-33s, Mk 5/6 Sabres, F-106s, F-4s and the F-100’s that eluded him his entire military career. He conducted a multitude of flying projects with Tracor Flight Systems for TAC, Army, Navy, Canada, England, Germany and Egypt. J.R. remotely controlled many QF-86s for Army and Air Force missile testing and flew three F-100 ferry flights across the North Atlantic, island hoping.
According to his records he’s the only pilot to fly two solo F-100 flights across the North Atlantic and the last to fly an F-100C, Sept. 6, 1989.
J.R. tells us “I ferried five Egyptian F-4Es, that Air Force F-4 pilots refused to fly, from Cairo West to the Cherry Pt. MCAS Depot with Air Force tanker air refueling support. My last four years consisted mostly of flying 50,000ft, 1.5 mach AQM-37 target launches for Navy Aegis missile ship qualifications out of Hawaii, Puerto Rico and Pt. Mugu. I fully retired after 46 years of flying at age 66 with over 11,000 total hours, over 600 air refuelings and a lot of war stories for the grand kids. When asked how I felt about my second flying career, I said, “I felt like I was a fighter pilot who died and went to heaven””.
See a video biography of Lt. Col. James R. Alley at the Flying Heritage website at: Https://video.flyingheritage.com/v/117066877/lt-colonel-james-r-alley.htm
- 1953 – Bsc Mil Tng (enlisted), Lackland AFB
- 1955 – AvCadet, Nav/Rdr Obsr.
- 1956 – Advanced Interceptor School, Moody AFB, GA (F-94C)
- 1956 – 123rd FIS, ORANG, Full-time ADC Alert (F-94B/F-89D/H)
- 1959 – UPT, (Distinguished Grad) Marianna(Anderson) AFB, Guam/Webb AFB, TX (T-34/37/33)
- 1961 – Advanced Interceptor School, (Distinguished Grad), Perrin AFB, TX (F-86)
- 1961 63rd/123rd FIS, ORANG, Full-time ADC Alert (F-89J)
- 1963 3575 PTS, Extended Active duty, Vance AFB, OK (T-33/38 -IP)
- 1966 RTU, MacDill AFB, FL (F-4C)
- 1967-1968, 335th TFS, Seymour Johnson AFB, NC (F-4D)
- 1968 Fighter Weapons Instructor School, (Distinguished Grad), Nellis AFB, NV (F-4D)
- 1968-1969 555th TFS, Squadron Weapons Instructor, Udorn AB, Thailand (F-4D-210 missions, 420hrs)
- 1969-1970 USAFE, 78TFS/81TFW, 92TFS, RAF Woodbridge/Bentwaters, England (F-4C/D)
- 1970, 1972 81TFW Team Capt., NATO’s AFCENT TAC WPNs COMP (F-4D)
- 1974-1975 TAC FTR WPNs CNTR, Tactics Officer, Nellis AFB, NV (F-4)
- 1975-1977 PACAF IG, Clark AB (Chief Operations Inspector)
- 1977-1979, Commander 1st Test Sqd (Combat Sage) Clark AB, F-4E
- 1979 Retired USAF
Awards & Decorations
Military & Civilian Education
- 1953 Basic Military Training (enlisted), Lackland AFB
- 1955 AvCadet, Nav/Rdr Obsr.
- 1956 Advanced Interceptor School, Moody AFB, GA (F-94C)
- 1959 UPT, Distinguished Grad
- 1961 – Advanced Interceptor School, Distinguished Grad, Perrin AFB, TX
- 1966 – SOS
- 1973-1974 ACSC in residence
- Two years college