“The Fighter School”


Originally a TF-80C and renamed (of course) the T-33A, 48-370 was in fact the 15th of these aircraft built. Truly, an early T-Bird. The photo says “Selfridge Field”, but the T-33 belonged to the 3525th Pilot Training Wing at Williams AFB, AZ (says so under the cockpit sill). However, the pilots wear the crest of the Selfridge’s 56th Fighter Interceptor Wing on their epaulets and the background does not look very Arizona-esque. Lt. Leonard Lilley, on the right, wears a US Army hat, so this is during the uniform transition period of the late-40’s to early 50’s. Note the stars denoting victory markings on the nose. Some of those markings may reflect the fact that the aforementioned Lilley shot down 7 MiGs during the then ongoing Korean War.

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