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From June until September 1979

 

Now that the examinations are done, we have to spend one more month before the school holidays. The holidays start early August ; until then, we will train every day the different types of moving as a platoon during a military parade with our instructor 1Sgt  Jordan.

We will have the honour to parade on the Place des Palais on July 21st 1979 in a detachment of Air Force Technical School. We will parade in front of the H.M. the King Baudouin, the Royal Family, and the Government. 

The parade itself is preceded by a general grouping and a revue of the troops by H.M. the King

Our dresses are always perfect, but in this case, we need to be irreproachable. We wear the Battle-Dress and the “beret”. Everything that could, was polished the day before. Our belts have received another layer of blue colour, every buckle was polished with “Duraglit”, and our combat shoes shine like mirrors. 

For the parade, three horseshoe nails are fit on the heals. Without these nails, it's very difficult to hear ourselves marching, which makes it difficult to keep the pace ; the marching noise beeing partially covered by the different music bands accompanying the different detachments. 

We rectify our dresses for the last time before we move on, under the lead of our music band and our platoon leader. The smaller are in front and the tall in the back, this way everyone is able to see in front of him and adjust his own alignment when necessary. 

Arriving on the Place des Palais, the pressure rises, we adjust our alignment a last time, a glance in front, one to the sides to make sure everyone is at the right place.
  

In front of the Royal tribune, the platoon leader shouts the order: “Head to the right… Right ! ”.
 
All, except the front right man, who needs to keep the platoon in the right direction, turn their head towards H.M. the King. Everyone in the platoon, while having the head to the right, keeps an eye on his right neighbour and his front man to keep the alignment of the platoon. Despite having his head turned towards the king, nobody really sees him…! 

A few seconds later, “Head forward…forward ! ” resounds ; everybody looks forward, the official tribune soon disappears…a few roads to go, and it’s already over…. it will all have only lasted a few minutes…but it will be an experience, we’ll never forget.

 

A few days later, we prepare for leaving for holidays, leaving bloc 41, and the D1 division of the Technical Training School. 

The D1 division is responsible for the initial training of the future technical NCOs. As future technicians, we studied the basics of aeronautical technology and received our military education there. 

The final training is the conversion on a type of aircraft for the members of the Air Force or on helicopters or light aircraft for the candidates of the Light Aviation. This last training is performed by the D2 division of the Technical School. 

As far as we are concerned, the three members of the Air Force (Bonfond-Dauchot-Lamock), are foreseen to receive a “F-16 Engine” training in Beauvechain.
 
The 1Wing received its first F-16 (FB01) on January 26, 1979. A training center was installed on base to be able to convert the technical personal for this new type of aircraft as soon as possible.
It’s at the F-16 MTU (Maintenance Training Unit) that we will receive our final training as aircraft technicians. 
 

At our return from holidays, on September 29, 1979, we nevertheless join the D2 section, to receive a training on technical documentation.
During these two weeks, we will receive the final date for moving to the 1st All Weather Fighter Wing. The move is foreseen on September 19, 1979. 

Now, here're three young Sergeants who joined the Air Force only one year ago, ready to move to an operational unit to receive their conversion course on one of the most advanced fighter aircraft of that time.

We are very excited…

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