Still Stunning at Fifty

A T-38 Talon last week rolled out of the paint shop at Randolph AFB, Tex., resplendent in the trainer aircraft’s original color scheme. This rollout was part of the 50th anniversary celebration of the first T-38 touching down at the San Antonio installation. Designed as a safe, high-performance platform for introducing pilots to flying fast, jet-powered aircraft, the Northrop-built Talon became Air Force’s first supersonic jet trainer. “The T-38, I think, is a very good example of the convergence of technology and the military requirements coming together at a propitious time,” said Welco Gasich, Northrop T-38 development engineer. Nearly 70,000 airmen began their flying career in the Talon. The first T-38 prototype flew in April 1959. (Randolph report by Maj. Rosaire Bushey)