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Yankee Air Pirates

USAF Uniforms and Memorabilia of the Vietnam War

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  • 29 April 1975 – 29 April 2015

    29 April 2015

    40 years ago today, on 29 April 1975 Hubert Van Es shot this iconic photograph, that instantly became a symbol of the fall of Saigon. It shows high ranking South Vietnamese citizens (including Gen. Tran Van Don and secret police chief Tran Kim Tuyen)...

  • Udorn 2016

    05 June 2016

    Photos taken by François in May at Udorn RTAFB. Previously home of the 432nd TRW; 11th, 13th & 45th TRS; 13th, 58th, 308th, 435th (F-104 era), 523rd, 555th TFS. It also welcomed the Waterpump program (training of Lao and Cambodian pilots). Not to forget...

  • Robert D. Gallup, 1st Air Commando Squadron

    11 July 2016

    Capt. Gallup's second pattern OG-107 shirt, with the usual shortened sleeves. All patches, including the 34th Tactical Group pocket patch, are Vietnamese hand embroidered. Here is a small tribute to Robert D. Gallup (25 Aug. 1934 – 16 June 1965). Robert...

  • Trip to Southern Laos

    17 June 2014

    UXO Lao, Saravane Province. HQ. When you live in Thailand, travelling to Laos is very easy. With a friend, who incidentally is also a collector and a contributor to Yankee Air Pirates, we flew from Bangkok to Ubon, then took a bus to the Laotian border,...

  • Vanishing Memories at Tan Son Nhut

    06 March 2014

    Since Saigon fell to the North Vietnamese, nothing had really changed at Tan Son Nhut until recently. The old airfield, built by the French in the 1920’s had seen the beginnings of civilian transport in Indochina. Then during WWII, French, Japanese and...

  • Time is of the essence

    12 September 2013

    At least, that's what the many documents sent to us by the publisher stated, warning us of various misfortunes if we failed to meet any deadline. So we faithfully delivered the script in June 2012, and provided all required corrections earlier this year....

  • Delta Devils: Binh Thuy Air Base remembered through a jungle jacket

    09 March 2014

    Most patches are Vietnamese made: the shoulder rank insignia might be U.S. made though. This jungle jacket was acquired too late to be included in the Security Police chapter of Volume 1, so this blog seems to be the perfect place to share it. It is the...

  • Return to Phu Cat

    09 April 2013

    Vietnam Airlines bus, with the taxiway leading to the runway in the back. During the summer 2006, I have had the opportunity to travel to Qui Nhon, to relax on the sandy beaches far from the hustle and bustle of the modern TP Ho Chi Minh, the old Saigon....

  • Lt. Col. Earl S. Crow, Jr. - 7th Airborne Command & Control Squadron

    02 January 2015

    It was not infrequent to find in Vietnam veterans from WWII or Korea. This party suit was ordered from Maharajah in Udorn, by Col. Crow during his November 1970/71 tour. 7th ACCS party suit displaying U.S. and Thai flags, unit and call sign patches. Ranks...

  • News from Thailand

    17 May 2013

    I am currently visiting François in Thailand. A great opportunity to dive off Koh Tao, one of the most beautiful spots in Southeast Asia. Besides the superb coral reefs, we had the pleasure to explore the wreck of HTMS Sattakut, which started her career...

  • A peek inside the book!

    01 October 2013

    October is here, and hopefully Vol.1 will be available by the end of the month. François brought to Paris the example he received in Bangkok, and we thought we might share some of the contents with our readers. Sooo, by popular demand, here are the very...

  • Capt. Jon E. Wroblewski – 23rd Tactical Air Support Squadron

    22 December 2014

    This new acquisition is echoing the party suit detailed on pages 84/85 of the first volume. Based at Nakhon Phanom under the 56th SOW, the 23rd TASS Nail FACs were flying missions over the Ho Chi Minh Trail and Cambodia during the 1972/73 period. By December...

  • Volume 2: layout review completed!

    01 September 2015

    François and Olivier in Paris in August. A tiny part of the 1st SOS section of volume 2 can be seen on the laptop. It has been a productive summer! François flew in from Bangkok and spent a few weeks in France before heading for Shanghai for new adventures....

  • Volume 2 is almost there!

    22 November 2015

    Now, more than ever, we need good news. And you know what? We have some of those! Olivier received his first copy of Yankee Air Pirates Volume 2 this week, which means it will soon be available for sale, hopefully by the end of the month. François' copy...

  • Crusader fans take note!

    17 December 2013

    Our friend Chris Monier has done an incredible work with his book "F-8 Crusader BuNo 149210". Chris acquired a Crusader cockpit some years ago, and during restoration he was able to document the aircraft story and trace back the pilots who flew it in...

  • Working on Volume 2

    16 July 2013

    Olivier (right) trying to adjust the colors of a scanned certificate while François is holding the original document. The cramped workplace and crowded shelves are, sadly, Olivier's trademark! Summer has finally decided to show up in Paris, after weeks...

  • Sergeant John F. Wytonick, 823rd Combat Security Police Squadron

    14 February 2017

    Vietnamese Marine Corps "Seawave" pattern Tiger Stripe uniform worn by Sgt. Wytonick. Note the Vietnamese QC (Military Police) patch, as worn by all SP personnel in South Vietnam. Combat Security Police personnel were allowed more personal choices for...

  • Vietnam Security Police Association

    03 May 2013

    37th SPS 81mm mortar. Photo by Mikes Sipes, www.vspa.com Volume 1 of Yankee air Pirates features a prominent chapter about USAF Air and Security Police units in Vietnam. Our interest for these rarely publicized units started when we found photos of 377th...

  • Lt. Col. William W. Michael, 56th ARRS.

    08 September 2014

    Maj. Michael was the Executive Officer of the squadron. The dusty local made cap had been packed with the uniform in a duffle bag since 1975. Here is yet another selection of items that arrived unfortunately too late for the first volume of Yankee Air...

  • Galley Review for Volume 2

    27 April 2015

    Business as usual for François The next volume of Yankee Air Pirates is moving along well ! We received the galleys a few days ago, while Olivier was travelling in Vietnam and François was still working in Thailand. We both spent days tracking down the...

  • Amazing blog: Jet Pilot Overseas

    12 April 2013

    This is one of the blogs that gets you hooked at first sight. The owner has accumulated tons of USAF pictures, ranging from 1946 to 1969. Although there are very few Vietnam shots, it is definitely worth a look. The K-2B suits, MA-1 and L-2B jackets,...

  • The Amazon mystery finally solved!

    29 December 2013

    After months of confusion, we finally found out why Yankee Air Pirates is not available on Amazon.com; it seems Amazon refuses to follow the publisher's pricing guidelines, as least in the USA. In the words of Mr Schiffer himself: Yankee Air Pirates is...

  • Volume 2 on the way!

    07 August 2014

    At last! We just mailed the manuscript of volume 2 to Schiffer Publishing. And believe me, it was about time! We started working on this volume during summer 2012, but the last weeks were completely hectic. I came back from a movie shooting on July 14th,...

  • Layout review: final check completed!

    20 June 2013

    Misty FAC F-100 pilot checking a rocket pod before taking off from Phu Cat AB (U.S. Air Force) We have just finished reviewing the PDFs sent by the publisher in their final format. The result is really great! We are really satisfied with the work done...

  • Swiss Zippo Guru: Rolf Gerster

    22 March 2013

    © 2013 Rolf Gerster It is impossible to write a book about Vietnam War collectibles without mentioning the Zippo lighter. During the war it became an iconic accessory, used by the units to inspire esprit de corps with nice factory etched designs, and...

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