The Republic F-105 Thunderchief is an American fighter bomber that served in the United States Air Force (USAF) from 1958 to 1984. The F-105 was commonly known as the "Thud" by it's crews.The first flight of the "Thud" was on 22 October 1955. It was introduced into service on 27 May 1958. The "Thud" conducted the majority of strike bombing missions during the Vietnam War. The F-105F/G models were two seat versions. The "G" model was a Wild Weasel version. Wild Weasel was the code name given by the USAF to an aircraft of any type equipped with anti-radiation missles and tasked with the suppression of enemy air defenses.
This F-105 belonged to the 355th Tactical Fighter Wing (TFW), of the 357th Tactical Fighter Squadron (TFS). The squadron was based at the Takhli Royal Thai Air Force Base, Thailand. This aircraft (63-8301) was flown by Captain Leo K. Thorsness and Captain Harold Johnson.
On 19 April 1967, Captain Thorsness and Captain Johnson protected an attempted rescue of another Wild Weasel crew that had been shot down. In the process they shot down two North Vietnamese MIG-17's. After running out of ammunition, Thorsness and Johnson continued to act as decoys to draw the MIG's away from the rescue aircraft. For their actions, Captain Thorsness was awarded the Medal of Honor, and Captain Johnson was awarded the Air Force Cross. In 1970, the 355th was the F-105's final unit in Vietnam before returning home to the United States.
The Wild Weasels version however, continued on until the end of the war. This Hobby Master diecast reproduction of the F-105 Thunderchief is an exquisitely detailed model. Assortment of bombs and rockets.
NOTE: This is an excellent and highly detailed reproduction of the Republic F-105 Thunderchief. It will make a welcome addtion to any Vietnam era collector, any F-105 "Thud" collector, or any aviation enthusiast's collection. This is the only one available. NOTE: This Hobby Master F-105 is a discontinued and out of production model. It is very difficult to find.
NOTE: The last photograph in the series is of this actual restored F-105 on display at the National Museum of the United States Air Force located in Dayton, Ohio.