315 Combat Missions, 24 Air Medals, 3 Distinguished Flying Crosses, on what makes a Great Pilot--George Nolly

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By Justin "HASARD" Lee. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

My guest today is George Nolly, who flew 315 combat missions over Vietnam in both the O-2 as a forward air controller and the F-4 as strike pilot; earning 24 Air Medals and 3 Distinguished Flying Crosses. He was the last pilot to complete 100 missions over North Vietnam. While in the Air Force, George received the Tactical Air Command Instructor Pilot of the Year Award.

After his service, George went into commercial aviation, flying for United Airlines as a Captain and Flight Instructor for 26 years. He is also the host of the Ready for Takeoff Podcast.

In our conversation we talk about his lead up to Vietnam, flying an F-4 into the most heavily defended airspace in the world, and what makes a good pilot.
Here are the show notes with associated time stamps.

  • Passion for flight (min. 04:00)
  • Pilot training (09:00)
  • Forward air control (15:20)
  • Vietnam as a FAC(20:00)
  • TKTKTK check around 21:00
  • Working the system (33:00)
  • F-4 Fighter training (38:30)
  • Vietnam in the F-4 (40:00)
  • Post-Vietnam (59:00)

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This episode was edited by Trevor Cabler
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