Lieutenant Robert Redmond, flight instructor at Meridian Naval Air Station
Lieutenant Robert Redmond had three nicknames: Red, Redass, and Refly. He wasn’t a screamer. He had his own way to make a student pilot’s life miserable. The rumor mill promulgated a number of Refly stories. In one of them Refly asked an ensign what he was.
“Sir, a student naval aviator, sir,” the academy grad had responded.
The student was a couple of inches shorter than Refly, and Refly had stepped very close to the student and looked down on him. With a soft, totally controlled voice, he’d said, “A naval aviator wears wings. A naval aviator is something. You are nothing. It’s not likely you will ever not be nothing.”
John Zerr is the author of four novels, The Ensign Locker, Sundown Town Duty Station, Noble Deeds, and The Happy Life of Preston Katt.
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