Tyndall Receives Final QF-4

The 82nd Aerial Target Squadron at Tyndall AFB, Fla., received the last QF-4 Phantom in mid-November. The Vietnam-era F-4—aircraft 68-0599—was regenerated from storage and turned in to a remotely piloted aircraft that will be used as an unmanned-full-scale-aerial target during training exercises, according to a Nov. 22 release. The Defense Department converted more than 300 retired F-4s into the QF-4 variant beginning in the late 1990s. Since then, the QF-4 fleet has flown more than 16,000 manned and 600 unmanned missions. Two hundred Phantoms have been destroyed over the Gulf of Mexico and the ranges near Holloman AFB, N.M., according to the release. Only 60 Phantoms remain today at Tyndall and Holloman. “It is a more fitting end for the F-4 to go out in service instead of rusting in a field,” said Vincent Farrell, 82nd ATRS instructor pilot and controller who flew the F-4 during his active duty career.