A Blog about Air Force Pilot & Crew Flight Suit Scarves

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Saturday, December 26, 2015

HELP WANTED - The Most Interesting Scarf in the World... (UPDATE - 48th TFW Stan/Eval scarf)

Once upon a time, there were three scarves, they looked similar, but they were different. They were part of a series made by P&M Embroidery of Huntingdon, UK, for the units at RAF Lakenheath. Their colors and presumed identities are presented below:

48th TFW Stan/Eval (Black/White)
48th TFW (Dark Navy Blue/White)
48th OG (Black/Light Gray)
There isn't any doubt that the dark navy blue one is the 48th Tactical Fighter Wing scarf. It would also follow that the black and white scarf would be the 48th Tactical Fighter Wing Stan/Eval scarf. But, what about the black and light gray one? I was told it was the 48th Operations Group scarf.

While there are three similar scarves, things get interesting in a hurry.

1) Several times, I have been told that the black/white scarf was (or also was) the 20th Tactical Fighter Wing scarf at Upper Heyford. That contradicts that I have also been repeatedly told that the 20th Tactical Fighter Wing did not have a wing scarf, per se. The wing staff would periodically rotate through the squadron scarves. Can anybody elaborate on this?

2) Photographs of the aircrew preparing to deploy for Desert Shield in 1990 seem to show a black scarf with white (or light gray) F-111 silhouettes being universally worn. Perhaps it was meant to match the disk of the 48th Tactical Fighter Wing patch which was very dark blue or black. Regardless, it seems to be a black scarf and not the standard dark blue wing scarf. So, it looks like the stan/eval scarf. [UPDATE... confirmed that the 48 TFW Stan/Eval scarf was the scarf worn on the initial crew deployment for Operation Desert Shield since it was a mixed "rainbow" deployment.]

3) The black and white scarf is also fairly common. I was told that piles of them were available for sale at the stalls at airshows during the F-111 phaseout. This contrasts to the much rarer dark blue/white and black/gray versions.

So, this black/white scarf is an interesting little scarf. Could it be the scarf worn by the 48th Tactical Fighter Wing while deploying for Desert Shield, also used as the wing stan/eval scarf, and also the 20th Tactical Fighter Wing scarf at Upper Heyford? Please, dear reader, help me!

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