Cheers to Mike

It was an evening in the summer of 1966, and all missions on the Greenland ice cap had been finished for the day. The flight crews not on alert had gathered together in the Fox and Hare club at Sondrestrom to share war stories and to have a Tuborg or two. It was a time for the squadron to wind down from the pressures of the day. Several Firebirds, along with Royal Air Force exchange pilot Mike Nash, were in a dark corner of the Fox and Hare fulfilling squadron tradition when I arbitrarily and capriciously decided that it was time for a bit of levity. Mike had an excellent sense of humor and seemed to be in good spirits, so I stood as if to offer a toast. Instead, I said in the best pseudo British accent that any Southerner could be expected to offer, "Chaps, my name is Mike Nash, and I can whip any three yanks in the place." All of the Firebirds went into hysterics, laughing until they cried, and Mike sank into the shadows emanating a red glow...laughing along with us. Another Firebird prank had been perpetrated.

In 1984, the Firebirds gathered in Abilene, Texas, for a reunion. After registering for the event. I was walking back to my room across the motel parking area when I heard a familiar British voice come from a nearby door, "My name is Nolan Bailey, and I can whip anybody in the place." It was good friend Mike Nash, and it was a pleasure to hear his voice. Obviously, Mike had not forgotten the incident even though eighteen years had passed. Here's to Mike...good sport...excellent pilot...member of the fraternal Firebird fellowship… Cheers! (Nolan Bailey, Firebird Pilot)