Modern Marvels

Season 13 Episode 50

Tomcat Sunset

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Nov 01, 2006 on The History Channel
out of 10
User Rating
2 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Tomcat Sunset
Hosted by Terry Deitz, a former Tomcat pilot, this special explores the legacy of one of the greatest fighter jets ever built. Witness first hand the last F-14 catapult launches and arrested trap landings aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt. Hear what the aviators and sailors who have flown and maintained this iconic aircraft over the years have to say about its long lived active duty career. Deitz will ride shotgun one last time before the F-14 is retired. Then reflect with veteran pilots, Navy brass, and airplane enthusiasts as the world bids farewell at the F-14 Memorial and Final Flight Ceremony at the Naval Air Station in Oceana, VA.moreless
No results found.
No results found.
No results found.
  • The history and legacy of the F-14 Tomcat is pivotal in America's naval aviation history and demonstrations one of our nation's resolve in promoting and keeping democracy strong.

    This special edition of Modern Marvels featuring the history of the Navy's F-14 Tomcat is exceptional, and accurate depicts the emotions of it pilots and crews of this fantastic aircraft. The Wings Over the Rockies Air and Space Museum, Denver, CO is currently having its Tomcat de-milled by Titan Systems, and it is a fantastic learning experience for our Restorations Team. Over the years, I have met many Tomcat drivers, RIOs, and maintenance crews and have experienced their 'love' of this awesome bird. The program covers many of the world events that the Tomcat has been associated with, but is only the tip of the iceberg. Purchasing a copy of this episode or recording it for your family is one small part of the many great abilities and advancement of our nation's modern marvels.moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (4)

    • The name "Tomcat" was selected partly as a tribute to the F-14 program's strongest supporters: Navy Admirals Thomas Connolly and Thomas Moorer.

    • The Grumman Corporation faced substantial contractual penalties if the jet it produced failed to meet the Navy's specifications. For example, each 100 pounds of excess weight would draw a fine of $440,000.

    • Over the course of 36 years, a total of 69 aircrew have lost their lives operating the F-14 Tomcat.

    • Without weapons and fuel, the F-14 weighs 42,000 pounds. When fully loaded, its max weight can increase to more than 72,000 pounds.

  • QUOTES (1)

    • Terry Deitz: It rewrote the rules of aerial combat and left an indelible mark on aviation history. An incomparable combination of aerodynamic agility and lethal firepower, the Grumman F-14 Tomcat ruled the skies for nearly four decades. Now, join me as we bid farewell to this most capable of cold war fighters. Welcome to the special edition of Modern Marvels, the final farewell to the F-14 Tomcat.

  • NOTES (1)

    • Commentators:

      Admiral Robert "Rat" Willard, US Navy
      Vice Chief of Naval Operations

      Commander Jim "Puck" Howe, US Navy
      Commanding Officer, VF-31

      Airman Chris Sarvis, US Navy
      Plane Captain, VF-31

      Captain David Dixon, US Navy
      Deputy Commander of the Air Group

      Captain Bill Sizemore, US Navy
      Commander of the Air Group

      Commander Curt "Opie" Seth, US Navy
      Executive Officer, VF-31

      Larry Brown
      Mechanic, Titan Systems

      Commander Jason Geiger
      F-14 Radar Intercept Officer

      Tom Reilly
      F-14 Program, Northrop Grumman

      Commander Paul "Butkus" Haas
      F-14 Pilot

      Hank Janiesch
      VP, F-14 Program, Northrop Grumman

      Charlie Brown
      F-14 Test Pilot, Grumman Corp.

      Dennis Romano
      F-14 Aircrewman, Grumman Corp.

      Bob Kress
      Engineering Manager, F-14 Program, Grumman Corp.

      Michael Pelehach
      F-14 Development, Grumman Corp.

      William "Taco" Bell
      F-14 Aircraft Inventory Manager

      Tyrone Pickett
      Junior Tradesman, Titan Systems

      SCPO Fred Barker, US Navy
      Maintenance Chief, VF-31

      AMA1 Jeff Gilbert, US Navy
      LPO, VF-31

      Scott Seymor
      Corporate Vice President, Northrop Grumman

      Captain Ted "Slapshot" Carter
      Former F-14 Pilot

      Commander Jim "Guido" DiMatteo, US Navy
      Former F-14 Pilot

      Robert Raine
      Public Affairs Specialist, AMARC