Reprinted from Globe and Mail
By Tom Hawthorne, Monday 9 August.
The retired air force pilot stood on grass slick with rain, the object of his admiration a snub-nosed fighter jet.
It was painted in the spectacular livery of the Golden Hawks, the defunct Canadian aerobatic flying team.
The warbird looked like it had been designed by George Jetson for use by the Thunderbirds, a swept-wing, single-seat futuristic vision whose shortened nose makes it appear as much lawn dart as jet.
The air intake hole in the cone, like a giant nostril, gives it a slightly comical appearance. In its day, it was about as whimsical as the shark snout it resembles.
The Sabre was the cutting-edge of a technology designed to deliver sudden and spectacular death to the enemy.
Don McBride spent three years of his life flying a Sabre along our side of the Iron Curtain. He patrolled possible hot spots on the most dangerous front of the Cold War.