Everett T. Raspberry



Preferred Name:
Everett

Nickname/Call Sign: Razz

Date of Birth: September 9, 1932 (September 26, 2019)

Highest Military Grade Held: Lieutenant Colonel

Hometown: Macon, GA

Biography

Early Jet days
My first jet assignment was with the 309th Strategic FighterSquadron flying a fighter called  F-84F Thunderstreak. Nothing could beat an F-84 going downhill, that was until the F-100 Super Sabre came along. My first thought of the F-100 was, “Boy, it sure has a big cockpit!” But each time you end up changing airplanes, you ended up thinking that way. They were all bigger than the previous one you came from. The F-100 had a lot more power and with afterburner, it felt like you were dancing on the head of a needle sometimes as you had to constantly “fly” the F-100 — there was not much room for error.
Eventually, I ended up sitting nuclear alert with them while stationed in Korea and after my stint there I was sent to USAF Fighter Weapons School at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, where I really learned how to fly and fight. After 11 weeks of hard flying in the F-100 and a lot of academics, I graduated the Top Gun of my class. In time, I was asked to stick around as an F-100 instructor and also teach air combat maneuvering and fire control systems. The early days of air-to-air missile work were quite simple. We had a five-inch high-velocity aircraft rocket on one side (HVAR) with flares on the back of it, and when you fired it, that became your target. Then you would simply pull up and fire your air-to-air missile at those flares and it would seek it out and blow it up. It was a one-man job until the F-4 Phantom came on line.
Enter the Phantom
I was selected as an instructor for the inaugural F-4C Fighter Weapons School — I was one of the first group of guys at Nellis to fly the Phantom. When I first laid eyes on the F-4 I thought,
“Boy, oh, boy, this is a big mother!” The more you saw of it, the bigger it got. It seemed bigger because the fuselage was so much wider and it seemed you could have a basketball game inside the thing.
At that time, I was still flying both fighters: the F-4 and the F-100. Other than having a lot more power than the F-100, I wasn’t really that impressed with the F-4 initially. It just proved to me that if you put enough power on a large rock, or in this case, an airplane, you could get anything to fly. With two powerful engines instead of one, it made a lot of noise and a whole lot more smoke.
The other major difference was I now carried a GIB — a guy in the back — and his job was weapon system operator (WSO). That was something I had handled myself in the F-100, but to be fair, it wasn’t as nearly as complicated as the upgraded equipment the F-4 had. There were a lot of “black magic” boxes in the backseat cockpit and you could search out 200 miles ahead of you with them. In the F-100 you were lucky to see a couple of city blocks.
The simple radar was just there to provide range to the target — from about 3,000 feet on in and you had no control over it, so it was really a big difference compared to the F-4. The F-100 radar was fixed while the F-4 would go 50 to 60 degrees from center, up and down 40
degrees.
Although you could go Mach 2 in the F-4, I was disappointed with it mainly because for the
first time in my career the Phantom was a fighter without guns. As a “fighter jock” I thought it was stupid — I mean, really stupid — period. It didn’t even have a computing gun sight. All it had was a combining glass that showed a piper and all you could do with that was adjust for bombing and stuff like that. It was Secretary of Defense Robert Strange McNamara’s belief that the Air Force could do away with guns and rely on missiles alone. I guess the people back in Washington knew more about what a fighter pilot needed than we did. Unfortunately for them, we would prove them wrong over the skies of Vietnam.
(source: Confessions of a MiG killer
by Lieutenant Colonel Everett T. Raspberry (USAF Ret) as told to and written by James P Busha. For more of the story go to https://www.flightjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/fj-2014-april.pdf?746277)

Units Assigned

  • 309th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Turner AFB, GA (F-84F)
  • 531st Tactical Fighter Squadron, Misawa AB, Japan (F-100)
  • FWIC, Nellis AFB, NV
  • 555th Tactical Fighter Squadron (F-4)
  • HQUSAF, Washington, DC
  • 4485th Test Squadron, Eglin AFB, FL
  • 1977 Retired USAF

Awards & Decorations

Silver Star
Distinguished Flying Cross
Bronze Star
Meritorious Service Medal
Air Medal (with 10 Oak Leaf Clusters)

Flight Info

F-84F
F-100
F-4

Military Education

  • Fighter Weapons School

Civilian Education

  • 1954 BS, Georgia Institue of Technology

Everett T. “Razz” Raspberry flew West on September 26, 2019. Razz was born September 9, 1932 in Macon, Georgia to Hazel Cowan and Everett T. Raspberry Sr. He attended grade and high school in Macon prior to enrolling in the Georgia Institute of Technology from which he graduated with his BS Degree and a USAF commission in 1954. Just prior to graduation, Razz met Betty Joann Dennard and they were married September 12, 1954.
After completion of Primary and Basic Flight School, the couple spent the next 23 years at various bases including Turner AFB, GA; Misawa AB, Japan; Nellis AFB, NV; HQUSAF, DC; and Eglin AFB, FL. While Joann anchored the home front, Razz was able to pursue his Fighter Pilot dreams.
While at Misawa, he was selected as the PACAF representative to the USAF Fighter Weapons Instructor School, Class 61-D. He graduated Top Gun in his class and was then selected to return to the school as an instructor and later as an OT&E Project Manager/Pilot.
Razz’ s initial South East Asia tour was with the 8th TFW at Ubon RTAFB where he completed a 100 Mission tour into NVN as Flight Lead and Strike Force Commander and is credited with downing two MiG aircraft in aerial combat. He completed three more TDY assignments to SEA as a Combat Introduction Team Chief/Pilot. He was responsible for the introduction of one air-to-air missile and two air-to-ground missile systems.
Following an abbreviated tour at HQUSAF, Razz was assigned to the 4485th Test Squadron, Eglin AFB, FL as the Operations Officer and later spent three years as the Commander.
He and Joann retired from active duty in 1977. His service awards include the Silver Star, Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal, and the Air Medal with ten Oak Leaf Clusters. Following retirement, he was associated with Armament Systems, Inc. for 26 years as an analyst and Program Manager.
Razz was a proud member of the First Presbyterian Church of Fort Walton Beach and served on a number of occasions as a Deacon and Ruling Elder. He was also a member of Delta Tau Delta Fraternity, Krewe of Bowlegs, Order of Daedalians and the Quiet Birdmen.
Col. Raspberry’s wife Joann passed away shortly after on October 22, 2019. They are survived by their son, Denny Raspberry; their daughter, Gayle Carmichael; four grandchildren, and three great grandchildren.
A Funeral Service was held on Tuesday, October 1, 2019 at the First Presbyterian Church of Fort Walton Beach, FL.  Burial for Col. Raspberry followed at Beal Memorial Cemetery, Fort Walton Beach, FL.
Source: https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/nwfdailynews/obituary.aspx?pid=194032356

Biography

Biography

Early Jet days
My first jet assignment was with the 309th Strategic FighterSquadron flying a fighter called  F-84F Thunderstreak. Nothing could beat an F-84 going downhill, that was until the F-100 Super Sabre came along. My first thought of the F-100 was, “Boy, it sure has a big cockpit!” But each time you end up changing airplanes, you ended up thinking that way. They were all bigger than the previous one you came from. The F-100 had a lot more power and with afterburner, it felt like you were dancing on the head of a needle sometimes as you had to constantly “fly” the F-100 — there was not much room for error.
Eventually, I ended up sitting nuclear alert with them while stationed in Korea and after my stint there I was sent to USAF Fighter Weapons School at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, where I really learned how to fly and fight. After 11 weeks of hard flying in the F-100 and a lot of academics, I graduated the Top Gun of my class. In time, I was asked to stick around as an F-100 instructor and also teach air combat maneuvering and fire control systems. The early days of air-to-air missile work were quite simple. We had a five-inch high-velocity aircraft rocket on one side (HVAR) with flares on the back of it, and when you fired it, that became your target. Then you would simply pull up and fire your air-to-air missile at those flares and it would seek it out and blow it up. It was a one-man job until the F-4 Phantom came on line.
Enter the Phantom
I was selected as an instructor for the inaugural F-4C Fighter Weapons School — I was one of the first group of guys at Nellis to fly the Phantom. When I first laid eyes on the F-4 I thought,
“Boy, oh, boy, this is a big mother!” The more you saw of it, the bigger it got. It seemed bigger because the fuselage was so much wider and it seemed you could have a basketball game inside the thing.
At that time, I was still flying both fighters: the F-4 and the F-100. Other than having a lot more power than the F-100, I wasn’t really that impressed with the F-4 initially. It just proved to me that if you put enough power on a large rock, or in this case, an airplane, you could get anything to fly. With two powerful engines instead of one, it made a lot of noise and a whole lot more smoke.
The other major difference was I now carried a GIB — a guy in the back — and his job was weapon system operator (WSO). That was something I had handled myself in the F-100, but to be fair, it wasn’t as nearly as complicated as the upgraded equipment the F-4 had. There were a lot of “black magic” boxes in the backseat cockpit and you could search out 200 miles ahead of you with them. In the F-100 you were lucky to see a couple of city blocks.
The simple radar was just there to provide range to the target — from about 3,000 feet on in and you had no control over it, so it was really a big difference compared to the F-4. The F-100 radar was fixed while the F-4 would go 50 to 60 degrees from center, up and down 40
degrees.
Although you could go Mach 2 in the F-4, I was disappointed with it mainly because for the
first time in my career the Phantom was a fighter without guns. As a “fighter jock” I thought it was stupid — I mean, really stupid — period. It didn’t even have a computing gun sight. All it had was a combining glass that showed a piper and all you could do with that was adjust for bombing and stuff like that. It was Secretary of Defense Robert Strange McNamara’s belief that the Air Force could do away with guns and rely on missiles alone. I guess the people back in Washington knew more about what a fighter pilot needed than we did. Unfortunately for them, we would prove them wrong over the skies of Vietnam.
(source: Confessions of a MiG killer
by Lieutenant Colonel Everett T. Raspberry (USAF Ret) as told to and written by James P Busha. For more of the story go to https://www.flightjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/fj-2014-april.pdf?746277)

Units - Education - Awards - Flight Info

Units Assigned

  • 309th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Turner AFB, GA (F-84F)
  • 531st Tactical Fighter Squadron, Misawa AB, Japan (F-100)
  • FWIC, Nellis AFB, NV
  • 555th Tactical Fighter Squadron (F-4)
  • HQUSAF, Washington, DC
  • 4485th Test Squadron, Eglin AFB, FL
  • 1977 Retired USAF

Awards & Decorations

Silver Star
Distinguished Flying Cross
Bronze Star
Meritorious Service Medal
Air Medal (with 10 Oak Leaf Clusters)

Flight Info

F-84F
F-100
F-4

Military Education

  • Fighter Weapons School

Civilian Education

  • 1954 BS, Georgia Institue of Technology
Photos
Headed West

Everett T. “Razz” Raspberry flew West on September 26, 2019. Razz was born September 9, 1932 in Macon, Georgia to Hazel Cowan and Everett T. Raspberry Sr. He attended grade and high school in Macon prior to enrolling in the Georgia Institute of Technology from which he graduated with his BS Degree and a USAF commission in 1954. Just prior to graduation, Razz met Betty Joann Dennard and they were married September 12, 1954.
After completion of Primary and Basic Flight School, the couple spent the next 23 years at various bases including Turner AFB, GA; Misawa AB, Japan; Nellis AFB, NV; HQUSAF, DC; and Eglin AFB, FL. While Joann anchored the home front, Razz was able to pursue his Fighter Pilot dreams.
While at Misawa, he was selected as the PACAF representative to the USAF Fighter Weapons Instructor School, Class 61-D. He graduated Top Gun in his class and was then selected to return to the school as an instructor and later as an OT&E Project Manager/Pilot.
Razz’ s initial South East Asia tour was with the 8th TFW at Ubon RTAFB where he completed a 100 Mission tour into NVN as Flight Lead and Strike Force Commander and is credited with downing two MiG aircraft in aerial combat. He completed three more TDY assignments to SEA as a Combat Introduction Team Chief/Pilot. He was responsible for the introduction of one air-to-air missile and two air-to-ground missile systems.
Following an abbreviated tour at HQUSAF, Razz was assigned to the 4485th Test Squadron, Eglin AFB, FL as the Operations Officer and later spent three years as the Commander.
He and Joann retired from active duty in 1977. His service awards include the Silver Star, Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal, and the Air Medal with ten Oak Leaf Clusters. Following retirement, he was associated with Armament Systems, Inc. for 26 years as an analyst and Program Manager.
Razz was a proud member of the First Presbyterian Church of Fort Walton Beach and served on a number of occasions as a Deacon and Ruling Elder. He was also a member of Delta Tau Delta Fraternity, Krewe of Bowlegs, Order of Daedalians and the Quiet Birdmen.
Col. Raspberry’s wife Joann passed away shortly after on October 22, 2019. They are survived by their son, Denny Raspberry; their daughter, Gayle Carmichael; four grandchildren, and three great grandchildren.
A Funeral Service was held on Tuesday, October 1, 2019 at the First Presbyterian Church of Fort Walton Beach, FL.  Burial for Col. Raspberry followed at Beal Memorial Cemetery, Fort Walton Beach, FL.
Source: https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/nwfdailynews/obituary.aspx?pid=194032356

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