Sabre Dancers

United States
Sabre Dancers F-86A

The "Sabre Dancers" aerobatic team were formed in January 1950 from the US Air Force 1st Fighter-Interceptor Group stationed at George Air Force Base, California. The team flew four F-86A Sabre aircraft and all the team members were the pilots from 27th Fighter Squadron. All the team's aircraft were F-86As also from 27th Fighter Squadron but with no special demonstration color scheme.

The "Sabre Dancers" pilots were: Capt Dwight Beckham - Lead, Lt Clement Bittner - Left Wing, Lt Russell Taliferro - Right Wing, and Lt Marvin Taylor in the Slot. Later Capt. Bob McCormick joined the team as right wing along with Capt. George Andrew Davis. In 1953, McCormick first became the "Thunderbirds" spare pilot and later flew as the slot pilot. McCormick also designed the "Thunderbirds" squadron patch that the team still wears today.

A remarkable aerial display of the "Sabre Dancers" occurred on April 22, 1950, at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida, for an audience that included President Harry S Truman.

In 1953, the "Sabre Dancers" demonstration team was disbanded as the "Thunderbirds" became the official team of US Air Force.

Sabre Dancers F-86A Sabre Dancers F-86A