The Original Fox and Hare Club

Photo by Wilbert "Will" Turk, 61st TCS Commander and Pilot, circa 1959

The Fox and the Hare Officer's Club was the center of activity for Firebird crews after duty hours. The original club was located just across the street from the Arctic Hotel which housed the Firebirds while they were TDY to Sondrestrom. Shuffle board, darts, pool, slot machines, and an arcade bowling machine were popular pastimes. Of course, a few bar games like "liars dice" and "dead bug" helped to create more exciting times.

In 1961 and 1962, the Firebirds shared the officer's club with SAC B-47 crews who were on alert. One night, when things were slow, the Firebirds challenged the SAC crews to a tug of war to be held inside the bar. Instigators like Joe Loucks, Buck (Dave) Buchannon, Lloyd Blasdel, and other such miscreants decided that the competition would be more interesting , and give the SAC troops a surprise, if the Firebirds were to tie the rope trailing behind the team to a pump-handle commode located in the men's restroom. When everyone was pulling hard, the Firebirds would let go of the rope. The Firebirds proceeded to lose and the SAC team pulled the stool right out of the floor and into the bar. It's hard to say who caught more flak from the Sondy base commander, them or us. By the way, Col. Francis Ransford, the squadron operations officer, was so impressed by the tug of war that he was given a pump handle commode at his re-assignment party as he was leaving the squadron. (Related by Lloyd Blasdel, Firebird Pilot)

  Back to Top