Fini Flight = A pilot’s last flight in the jet as he/she departs from that assigned unit. A tradition for aviators since World War II, it’s a celebration for the pilot and their family/friends.
On Sept 15, Michael had his final flight with the Fiends. It was also his last flight in the F-16 (for now….never know what plans the Air Force has in store for you), so this was certainly a milestone worth celebrating.
Typical side story – Michael ended up diverting to Kunsan because the Korean Prime Minister was in the air (some blah blah weird rule about air space blah blah), so he was actually delayed two hours. That was fun.
So here’s how it “goes” down: The pilot lands and is greeted by friends, family, and squad mates. The pilot attempts to “escape” – apparently if he makes it back to the squadron untouched, everyone owes him beer. However this (as far as we know) has never happened.
The pilot inevitably gets caught and tied up in duct tape. Then sprayed with water. THEN also sprayed with champagne by the wife (or kids). The pilot usually gets scratched up and bruised somewhere. Someone’s kid always starts crying. It’s hilarious.
A friend caught this photo from the event, and it couldn’t be more perfect:
We all laugh at a job well done, take a million pictures, then head back to the squadron for food and booze. All is well.
Despite his diversion to Kunsan and the dooming stress of PCSing, it was a wonderful day. The weather was gorgeous with blue skies and a light breeze. Huge thank you to our buddy Travis “Flip” Worden for taking these amazing photos (the ones that aren’t iPhone quality). It’s been a hectic year in Korea, but the Fiends and Fiendettes made it all worthwhile. Harrumph!
Kisses & Kimchi,