William Tell

The William Tell Fighter Weapons & Air Defense meet competitions are famous from the early 50s on wards.
During the operational period of the F-104 in the USAF also this aircraft participated in some of the meets and even won the 1962 episode (by 479TFW, George AFB).
Known F-104 squadron participation are described beneath:


September 1959 - William Tell Air Defense Meet, Tyndall Air Force Base.

The 337th FIS and 538th FIS both participated with a number of F-104A Starfighters. Aircraft seen during these event at least were: F-104A 56-847 and 56-876.
The Larson based 538th FIS also won the Richard I. Bon Trophy as can be seen on the picture beneath thanks to Andrew Hanna. Only 3 pilots could be recognized by reading their name tags. They are Homer C. Boles, Eustace Mel Bunn and Einar Knute Enevoldson. Who recognizes the other guys?
Furthermore both squadrons scored perfect hits on every one of their night missions. Perfect scores were also recorded on all eight high altitude missions.


1960 - Fighter Weapons Meet

The 479th TFW from George AFB participated with a number of F-104C Starfighters for the first time in a William Tell competition.
During this exercise this team was the high-scoring TAC team with 45,231 points. Teamleader Col. George I. Ruddell took the Team Captain High TAC Team Award with 11,347 points.
Beneath pictures of the successful team. Aircraft shown is the F-104C 56-911 flown by Col. Ruddell. Note the special stripings around the inlet cones. Other team mates were David Clardy, Ken Ohman, and William Warren. The fifth team member was not recognized sadly.



September 1962 - Fighter Weapons Meet, Nellis Air Force Base.

The 479th TFW from George AFB participated with a number of F-104C Starfighters and won the competition.
Aircraft seen were: F-104C 57-914, 57-915 and 57-916. Overall winning F-104C pilot was USAF Captain Charles "Chuck" E. Tofferi.
Beneath a photo taken at Nellis AFB of 57-914 during the Fighter Weapon Meet, taken on September 15th (USAF, thanks to Peter Mühlböck)


Nice video around this 1962 meet can be found here:


September 1963 - Air Defense Meet

Nr 151st FIS participated with a number of F-104A and at least one F-104B Starfighters.
Aircraft seen were: F-104A 56-823, 56-882 and F-104B 57-1302.

September till October 7th, 1965 - Air Defense Meet

The 331st FIS based at Webb AFB and the 319th FIS based at Homestead AFB, participated with a number of F-104A Starfighters.
Capt J.D.Dunn (319th FiS) was declared "William Tell Top Gun" and Capt Bob Sweetwood (319th FIS) received  a trophy with a record for hitting 14 towed darts in a row.

See also video regarding this exercise (including some shots on participating Starfighters) here: