In the late 1940s/early 1950s with a “little” of german captured know-how (Lippish) and a decent and “very USAF” J57 engine (after the terrible Westinghouse J40), the Douglas company under the direction of the great E. H Heinemann created this little gem. An iconic beauty called the “Ford” (F4D phonetically) and also called the “10-minutes killer” because fast climb, interception and -hopefully- destruction of the enemy in a flash was its mission. Efficient and good performers, they were indeed a class apart.
Still in the era of unabashed panache, these “Fords” show us their fighting colours. In the foreground the red lightnings of the VF-74 and behind the somehow more elegant ones of the VFAW-3 “Blue Nemesis”. Curiously the later unit was the only Navy unit assigned to the North American Air Defense Command (NORAD). Some Crusaders and “Scotters” also in the background; quite an icing on the cake. The base could be NAS North Island, VFAW-3’s home…, a wild guess of mine though.