Robert V. “Boris” Baird

Preferred Name: Borris
Nickname/Call Sign: Borris
Date of Birth: December 10, 1932
Headed West Date: April 15, 2014
Highest Military Grade Held: Lieutenant Colonel, 05
Hometown: Tucson, AZ

Robert V. “Boris” Baird was our friend, colleague and fellow fighter pilot. He attended our Friday lunches regularly.

Unfortunately, as we collectively agreed to write our Friday Pilots book, Boris was suffering from terminal cancer. As a tribute to Boris we included a story previously written by him about his first mission in the Vietnam war.

On 30 Apr 1968, while at George AFB, instructor pilot Maj Robert V. “Boris” Baird, ejected successfully from F- 105D 61-0083 when it developed a flight control problem after takeoff.

He was flying an F-105 Thunderchief on a low-level “flak suppression” mission, something we quickly learned was a terrible idea. Boris was shot down, finding himself on foot in North Vietnam. He was successfully rescued late in day and returned to complete his 100 mission tour.

Years later, some of Boris’ friends who participated in his rescue joined him to recall and celebrate his “first combat“ mission.

After retirement, Boris went on to become an aerobatic pilot. He was an fisherman and wild game trophy hunter.

He became manger of the U.S. Aerobatic team in the 1990s.

Boris was full of life. We miss him but are confident he is smiling down upon us, reading the Friday Pilots book and performing loops and chandelles in Heaven.

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