Viper Pilot on Verge of Record

Col. Mike Brill, a pilot with the Air Force Reserve’s 419th Fighter Wing at Hill AFB, Utah, is poised to become the first-ever flier to reach 6,000 flight hours in the cockpit of the F-16. The Salt Lake City’s Deseret News reported April 25 that Brill, currently deployed to Iraq, likely will cross the threshold during a mission scheduled for April 29 out of Balad Air Base. He began flying F-16s in 1980 as a member of Hill’s active-duty 388th Fighter Wing. He became the first US fighter pilot, in 1993, to reach 3,000 hours. He reached the 5,000-hour milestone in 2002. There is currently only one other pilot, also an American, among the 24 nations that fly the F-16 who is in the 5,000-hour category.