Swanky Franky’s Phlyers over Etna
Here we see a breathtaking image of a U.S. Navy McDonnell F-4N Phantom II (BuNo 150415) of Fighter Squadron VF-84 “Jolly Rogers” in flight over Sicily’s Mt. Etna, sometime in 1975.
VF-84 was long-assigned to Carrier Air Wing 6 (CVW-6) aboard the Midway-class aircraft carrier USS Franklin D. Roosevelt (CVB/CVA/CV-42) and the above was taken during a deployment to the Mediterranean Sea from 3 January to 16 July 1975.
All of the above is a memory as the carrier “Swanky Franky” decommissioned 30 September 1977 and was scrapped and the Navy soon phased out Phantoms just after that (although one preserved in Pensacola flew from FDR’s sistership). As for VF-84, they went on to switch to F-14s (which they used in the epic sci-fi mashup The Final Countdown to scratch a pair of Japanese zeroes) before they disbanded 1 October 1995.
Mount Etna, of course, is still around and is just as active as ever.