13th Fighter Squadron Panther Pack F-16 Model
Fly with the Panther Pack of the 13th Fighter Squadron in this wooden F-16 model. Each model is carved and painted to provide a unique piece of history that you’ll love.
The 13th flew antisubmarine patrols in the Gulf of Mexico from, June–August 1942 and served as an operational and replacement training unit from, April 1942–October 1943. It flew combat missions in Southeast Asia from, 15 May 1966 – 30 June 1975.
During the Vietnam War, while stationed at Udorn Royal Thai Air Force Base, the squadron’s mascot was a full-grown black panther (Asian leopard), named Eldridge. The cat was given to the squadron in 1970, as the story went by an Air America (CIA) pilot who picked it up in Laos. Eldridge was kept in a large cage near the Squadron building and often taken for walks around the Base. Although tame, he was still a wild animal and after the war was given to the Phoenix Arizona zoo in 1973. The squadron adopted the nickname “The Panther Pack,” and the image of the black panther appears on the unit emblem. The name Eldridge was chosen as a nod to Eldridge Cleaver (31 August 1935 – 1 May 1998) a radical and author, who served as the Minister of Information for the Black Panther Party.
The squadron performed tactical fighter training for pilots and weapons systems officers from, January 1976–June 1982 and since 1985