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.
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.
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
Mechanic, Titan Systems
Commander Jason Geiger
F-14 Radar Intercept Officer
F-14 Program, Northrop Grumman
Commander Paul "Butkus" Haas
VP, F-14 Program, Northrop Grumman
F-14 Test Pilot, Grumman Corp.
F-14 Aircrewman, Grumman Corp.
Engineering Manager, F-14 Program, Grumman Corp.
F-14 Development, Grumman Corp.
William "Taco" Bell
F-14 Aircraft Inventory Manager
Junior Tradesman, Titan Systems
SCPO Fred Barker, US Navy
Maintenance Chief, VF-31
AMA1 Jeff Gilbert, US Navy
Corporate Vice President, Northrop Grumman
Captain Ted "Slapshot" Carter
Former F-14 Pilot
Commander Jim "Guido" DiMatteo, US Navy
Former F-14 Pilot
Public Affairs Specialist, AMARC