I was working a flight of T-34s outbound from Whiting at 5500 feet when I got a surprise handoff from Jacksonville Center: an F/A-18 Hornet screaming along VFR at 4500 feet.
The Hornet's route would take him directly under the T-34s. They were my only traffic and the T-34 flight lead sounded thrilled to be in his cockpit. I figured I may as well give him some added excitement and point out the Hornet, since there's usually not much in that neck of the woods other than, well, other T-34s. Besides, they were only 1000 feet apart vertically so a traffic call was in order.
Me: "Blackbird 123 and flight, traffic, twelve o'clock, four miles, southwest-bound, 4500, F-18 Hornet."
BB123: (excitedly) "Oh! Roger! Searching for traffic."
Hornet: (chimes in) "Radar."
Me: "Blackbird 123, do you have him in sight?"
Hornet: (somewhat exasperated) "Approach, I've got radar contact on him."
Me: (thinks about it) "Errr... Oh! Hornet, roger."
It was pretty amusing to hear an airplane say "radar contact" regarding another aircraft. I guess I just don't work too many aircraft that have their own onboard Hughes/Raytheon fire control radar suite.
Now, things would have gotten real interesting if a moment later the Hornet driver yelled out, "Fox three!" :)
4 days ago