Aircraft Data Sheet

for F4-N Bu. No. 153030


   The McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II was destined to become one of the finest weapons the Navy had ever used. It was first conceived as an attack aircraft, but was redesigned to fill the role of a long range high altitude interceptor using air-to-air missiles. Deliveries to operational units began in 1960, and by 1966 twenty nine Navy and Marine squadrons were flying the Phantom. The primary role for the early Phantoms had been interception and air superiority, but deployment of the type to Vietnam put emphasis on the secondary strike role, carrying a wide range of external stores.

   In January 1971, the US Navy launched a programme (Project Beeline) to modify and update 228 F-4Bs, pending introduction of the F-14.  Designated the F-4N, these aircraft  were modified up to the standard of the final production F-4B, with the addition of AIMS, data link, air-to-air IFF, dogfight computer and pilot lock-on mode and other equipment, plus structural strengthening to extend the fatigue life.. (source: United States Navy Aircraft since 1911 by Gordon Swanborough and Peter Bowers)

Click on photo to view larger version.









     The Phantom II, two aircrews, two US Navy fighter squadrons and the USS Midway made air-to-air combat history together during the Vietnam War.  This aircraft, The Midway Phantom, is painted to commemorate the events.  View this airplane's Sponsor Recognition Page to learn more. 

     This aircraft flew to NAS North Island from NAS Point Mugu on 25 August 2004.  It became an exhibit on SDACM Midway on 7 December 2004. View gallery of photos taken of this aircraft before it was repainted as a USS Midway exhibit  This gallery includes photos of pilot, Rich "Mink" Bryant, and RIO, LT John Baker, manning up for 3030's historic flight from NAS Pt Mugu to NAS North Island.  This was the last flight of a U.S. Navy Phantom II, and it was "Mink" Bryant's last flight in a tactical jet aircraft.


  •   4 AIM-7 Sparrow III missiles.

  •   4 AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles.

Photo by Frank Warren.

Nickname:  Old Smokey, Big Ugly Fighter

Read a tribute to the F-4J Phantom II.

Bu No 153030 Assignment Record

Date of manufacture:  1966

Manufacturer:  McDonnell Douglas, Saint Louis, MO


Assignment location(s):

07/01/66 09/08/66 NPRO ST LOUIS (Listed as F-4B)

09/08/66 09/23/67 VF 121, NAS Miramar

09/23/67 05/18/68 VF 21, NAS Miramar

05/18/68 12/20/69 VF 114, NAS Miramar

12/20/69 04/01/70 VF 121, COSA NAS Miramar

04/01/70 04/21/70 VF 161, USS Coral Sea

04/21/70 12/21/70 VF 161, USS Midway

12/21/70 03/10/71 VF 161, NAS Miramar

03/10/71 06/18/71 VF 51, NAS Miramar

06/18/71 02/25/72 VF 51, USS Coral Sea

02/25/72 05/19/72 NARF NAS North Island

06/08/73 06/05/74 VF 51 NAS Fallon

07/24/74 03/12/75 VMFA 531, MCAS El Toro

03/12/75 06/14/77 NARF NAS North Island (11/18/76 - Conversion to F-4N)

06/14/77 02/24/81 VMFAT 101, MCAS Yuma

07/03/81 10/09/81 VMFA 323, MCAS El Toro

10/09/81 08/17/82 VMFA 323, NAS Miramar

08/17/82 12/13/82 NWC NASC FS China Lake

04/19/95 06/20/96 NASC FS MCAS Cherry Point (04/13/95 Conversion to QF-4N)

06/20/96 06/18/02 NASC T&E, NAS Point Mugu

06/18/02 08/25/04 COMNAVAIRSYSCOM, NAS Point Mugu

08/25/04 Stricken from Naval Inventory on site to USS Midway for display. On loan to USS Midway Museum from the National Museum of Naval Aviation (NMNA), with an option for renewal.


Donor of the aircraft to museum:  National Museum of Naval Aviation (NMNA)

Date received by museum: 08/25/04


Photos of this aircraft in previous paint schemes and assignments.

Click to enlarge.


  Photos provided by



Click here to view  F-4 page in NMNA web site.


Page updated on 19 December 2007