THE F-4 THAT REFUSED TO DIE

A memorable mission with QF-4 Phantom IIs and F-14 Tomcats in the heyday of missile testing operations at Point Mugu.

QF-4N BuNo 150465 during a manned flight from Point Mugu in July 1996 while attached to the resident test squadron.

IT WAS LESS than a stellar day on the weather front back in March 1998. There were three layers of gloomy clouds spread across the skies and robust winds combined with a ‘marine layer’ just above the ocean surface. Still, we had a mission to do: a live-firing VX-9 ‘Vampires’ F-14 Tomcat feeding frenzy, clawing at a sole unmanned QF-4N Phantom II off the coast of Point Mugu, California, within the expansive Whiskey 291 range complex.

Become a Premium Member to Read More

This is a premium article and requires an active Key.Aero subscription to view. You can also access it if you’re subscribed to one of our Key Publishing magazines.

I’m an existing member, sign me in!

I don’t have a subscription…

Why not join our community of aviation enthusiasts? Pick one of our introductory offers and access a wealth of world-class aviation content.