Helen Murphy © 2009-2016 All Rights Reserved
Photo of Rich taken September 2, 2013.
T-28 on back of party suit.
Always a Tiger! Major Ambrose retired from the USAF in October 1989.
USAF (Retired) MAJOR RICH AMBROSE
This was the last T-28 combat training class at Hurlburt Field. It was near the end of the SEA conflict. The crash of two T-28 Instructor Pilots, Maj. Mike O'Donovon and Maj. John Roberts, killed January 1973 due to a wing structural failure may have also contributed to the end of the T-28 combat training.
Rich Ambrose was stationed at Udorn RTAFB, Thailand from February 1973 to February 1974. He was the Flight Commander and later Chief of the Standardization and Evaluation section. During the last months of his tour he trained the four most experienced Laotian pilots the techniques of instrument flying to prepare them for Instructor Pilot Instrument School (IPIS), an advanced training class held in the United States.
His flight records indicate he flew BuNo 138192 eight times between April 1973 to July 1973 for a total of 15 hours while at Udorn. He has a total of 2126 hours in the T-28 (A, B, C & D models). Most of his time was busy conducting flight check rides of the American Instructor Pilots but he also taught the Laotian pilots how to drop bombs and shoot 50 caliber guns from their T-28's.
Party Suit: The detachment at Udorn was called "Waterpump," "Every man a Tiger" was the unit slogan. "Yankee Air Pirate" referred to any pilot flying in SEA. The patches below the pirate patch refer to the RLAF.
Rich flew one combat mission in the T-28 out of Phnom Penh, Cambodia otherwise most of his flying was combat support.