Armour Collection B11E399 US Navy Grumman F-14D Tomcat Fleet Defense Fighter - Capt. William G. Sizemore, VF-213 "Black Lions", Last Mission, February 8th, 2006 (1:48 Scale)
"Obsolete weapons do not deter."
- British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
Built for speed and armed with ultra long-range weapons. It's no wonder that the F-14 Tomcat is the main defender of the US fleet. The Tomcat's AWG-9 radar has the ability to engage as many as six targets at once, which is the same number of targets that can be engaged by three F-18 Hornets. Additionally, it's Phoenix air-to-air missiles can kill hostile bombers 90 miles away -- before they can launch their attacks. With its distinctive swing-wings, which enables it to combine high-speed performance and supersonic maneuverability, the F-14 Tomcat is undeniably one of the world's true "Top Guns".
Pictured here is a stunning 1:48 scale diecast replica of a US Navy F-14D Tomcat attached to the VF-213 "Black Lions" and signifies the last mission ever flown by the F-14 on February 8th, 2006. Sold Out!
Release Date: March 2007
Historical Account: "Last Mission" - The F-14 has completed its retirement from US Naval service. At one point, it was slated to remain in service through at least 2008, but all F-14A and F-14B airframes had already been retired, and the last two squadrons, the VF-31 Tomcatters and the VF-213 Black Lions, both flying the "D" models, arrived for their last fly-in at Naval Air Station Oceana on 10 March 2006.
The last American F-14 combat mission was completed on February 8th, 2006, when a pair of Tomcats landed aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt after one dropped a bomb in Iraq. That aircraft was assigned to VF-31 and the aircrew credited with the last bomb dropped in combat by a Navy Tomcat was pilot Lt. Justin Halligan and RIO Lt. Bill Frank. The other Tomcat on that mission was an F-14D from VF-213 piloted by Commander, Caarrier Air Wing Eight, Capt. William G. Sizemore, and became the last F-14 to land on an aircraft carrier after a combat mission. During their final deployment with the USS Theodore Roosevelt, VF-31 and VF-213 collectively completed 1,163 combat sorties totaling 6,876 flight hours, and dropped 9,500 pounds (4,300 kg) of ordnance during reconnaissance, surveillance, and close air support missions in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
On March 10th, 2006, the 22 planes from these squadrons flew in formation into Naval Air Station Oceana after the last deployment of the F-14. VF-31 remained operational in the F-14 Tomcat under the Fleet Response Plan (FRP) through September and conducted the last carrier qualifications in late July maintaining their ability to deploy right up until the end. VF-213 and VF-31 would transition to the Super Hornet training.