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As has been the case for some six months now some four to eight former Army helicopter pilots get together for coffee and breakfast. True to form, a couple "war stories" are aired in the noble cause of oneupmanship.
For readers who are not adept in the art of hover flight, I must provide ample warning that these proceedings are not suitable for family entertainment. You see, Army Aviators of the Viet Nam War visualize ourselves as unique in that we have dared to fly machines that literally beat the air into submission in order to rise above mother earth.
Further, normal rules of flight have been amended or ignored to fit the circumstance. An example that readily comes to mind is the long standing regulation of twelve hours from "bottle to throttle." Since there was no bottle beer in Viet Nam back in the day, a cold can of Bud, Falstaff, Carling, Pabst, or Miller did not count.
Much has been written about these guys over the years, and no doubt more will be. To the "unwashed" reader one might surmise that these folks were both gifted and daring in their aerial exploits, but the term "scared to death" is more appropriate. The term lucky also is quite fitting.
Today's story involved one of our members sitting adjacent to some distant runway watching a "birddog" land. Now a birddog is by Army nomenclature an O-1, but basically it's a Cessena 172. Upon the bird coming to a full stop and the pilot door opening, the first out was a chicken who obviously was not happy with the in flight amenities.
Now, use your imagination as to what four former pilots who between them have been shot down eight times would care to comment. Thus, the not suitable for family entertainment emerges.
Should any other Army Aviator have an interest in the PTC Liar's Club, let us know and we'll get "Skip" right on it.

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