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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Palmdale in Los Angeles County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

William J. “Pete” Knight

1929-2004

 

—F-100 Super Sabre —

 
William J. "Pete" Knight Marker image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, September 12, 2015
1. William J. "Pete" Knight Marker
Inscription.
William J. "Pete" Knight
(November 18, 1929 – May 8, 2004) was a combat pilot, test pilot, Astronaut, and US politician. Knight holds the world’s speed record for flight in a winged powered aircraft. Knight enlisted in the United States Air Force in 1951. Starting in 1958, Knight served as a test pilot at Edwards Air Force Base. He was a project test pilot for the F-100, F-101, F-104 and later, T-38 and F-5 test program. In 1963, he completed the astronaut training curriculum at Edwards AFB and was selected to fly the X-15. On October 3, 1967, Knight set a world aircraft speed record by piloting the X-15A-2 to 4,520 miles per hour (Mach 6.7) - a record that still stands today. During 16 flights in the aircraft, Knight also became one of only five pilots to earn their astronaut’s wings by flying an airplane in space, reaching an altitude of 280,500 feet. After 32 years of service and more than 6,000 hours in the cockpits of more than 100 different aircraft, he retired from the USAF as a Colonel in 1982. In 1984, he was elected to the City Council of Palmdale, California, and four years later became the city’s first elected mayor. In 1992, he was elected to serve in the California State Assembly representing the 36th District. He served in the State Senate representing the 17th District from 1996 until his
F-100 Super Sabre Marker image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, September 12, 2015
2. F-100 Super Sabre Marker
death on May 8, 2004.

F-100 Super Sabre
Nicknamed “Hun”
General Information

Manufacturer:
North American Aviation
Production Period: 1953 to 1959
Number Produced: 2,294
Production Series: USAF: 100A,C, & D single seat A/C F-100F two-seat A/C

Roles: Originally designed as a land-based fair-weather air superiority fighter for the US Air Force; later developed into a land based all-weather multi-mission aircraft for the US Air Force, capable of close air support, interception and forward air control.

Performance and Specifications
(Figures given are for the F-100D model)
Maxium Speed: 910 mph (Mach 1.2)
Service Ceiling: 46,900 feet above sea level
Range: 1,995 miles
Weapons: Four M39 20mm cannons, AIM-4 Falcon, AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles, and a variety of air to ground rockets and bombs could be carried on the six wing and one fuselage stations
Crew: Pilot
Length: 54 feet, 2 inches
Wingspan: 38 feet, 9 inches
Height: 16 feet, 2 inches
Maximum Takeoff Weight: 37, 124 lbs.
Powerplant: Pratt & Whitney J57-P-21/21A turbojet engine with afterburner providing 16,000 lbs. of thrust
Achievments:
F-100 Super Sabre Marker image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, September 12, 2015
3. F-100 Super Sabre Marker
First operational USAF aircraft to exceed the speed of sound in level flight; operated by the USAF Thunderbirds and USAF Europe Skyblazer Flight Demonstration teams.

Right Panel:
F-100
A/C SN: 54-2299
Construction# 223-179
Date Acquired: 8-1-98
From: Loan, USAF George AFB, Ca
Displayed: 10-1-98
Built at Inglewood, California; left production line on Aug-27, 1956.
1956 8th TFW, 80th TFS (Headhunters) Itazuke AB, Japan: The 8th FBW became the 8th TFW on July 1, 1958 with the wing converting from F-86 to the F-100. During this time each squadron rotated to Kunsan Air Base, Korea for training missions and occasionally, an operational mission along the de-militarized zone.
1959 8th TFW, 80th TFS, Osan AB, Korea: Wing transferred to Osan Air Base, Unit on dawn to dusk alert status.
1959 4520 CCTW, Nellis AFB, NV: Aircraft used as a Thunderbird during the Far East Tour in 1959, Thunderbird aircraft were normally the F-100C model, however, these did not possess aerial refueling capability necessary to cross the Pacific.
1960 4520 CCTW, Nellis AFB, NV: Aircraft crashed, but was repairable.
1962 4520 CCTW, Nellis AFB, NV: Aircraft returned after repairs were made.
1962 4510 CCTW, Luke AFB, AZ: Aircraft transferred to 4510 CCTW; still used for combat
William J. "Pete" Knight 1929-2004 F-100 Super Sabre Markers image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, September 12, 2015
4. William J. "Pete" Knight 1929-2004 F-100 Super Sabre Markers
crew training.
1969 58 TFTW, Luke AFB, AZ: Tactical fighter training wing.
1970 114 TFG, 175 TFS, Joe Foss ANG Base, SD. Transferred to South Dakota ANG
1970 180 TFG, 112 TFS, Toledo Airport, OH. Transferred back to South Dakota ANG
1970 114 TFG, 175 TFS, Joe Foss ANGB, SD. Transferred back to South Dakota ANG
1981 George AFB, CA,: Displayed as gate guard at George AFB.
1999 Palmdale, Ca. Transferred to Palmdale Heritage Airpark and placed on display, designated “Spirit of Palmdale”.
 
Erected by Joe Davies Heritage Airpark.
 
Location. 34° 36.155′ N, 118° 5.281′ W. Marker is in Palmdale, California, in Los Angeles County. Marker can be reached from East Avenue P, on the left when traveling east. Touch for map. Located at Joe Davies Heritage Airpark, open Fri-Sun 11-4. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2001 East Avenue P, Palmdale CA 93550, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. F-101 VOODOO Escort Fighter (a few steps from this marker); MK-20 Rockeye Cluster Bomb Unit (within shouting distance of this marker); Wright J65 Turbojet Engine (within shouting distance of this marker);
William J. "Pete" Knight 1929-2004 F-100 Super Sabre and Markers image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, September 12, 2015
5. William J. "Pete" Knight 1929-2004 F-100 Super Sabre and Markers
A-4AR Cockpit Trainer (within shouting distance of this marker); A.W. "Tony" LeVier 1913-1998 (within shouting distance of this marker); F-86F-30 (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); B-2 Spirit (about 300 feet away); Stanley P Butchart 1928 - 2008 / C-140 Jetstar (about 300 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Palmdale.
 
Categories. Air & Space
 
1963 image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, December 10, 2013
6. 1963
Taken at the USAF Thunderbird Museum at Nellis AFB, NV.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 14, 2018. This page originally submitted on May 6, 2018, by Denise Boose of Tehachapi, California. This page has been viewed 55 times since then. Last updated on June 13, 2018, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on May 6, 2018, by Denise Boose of Tehachapi, California.   6. submitted on May 8, 2018, by Denise Boose of Tehachapi, California. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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