Two of the Saratoga’s F14 Tomcats were tasked to defend the carrier against a simulated attack during Exercise Display Determination 87. The leader of this small formation included a senior pilot and skipper of a newly arrived Junior Grade Lieutenant Timothy Dorsey. Many years later, Dorsey would be nominated for promotion to a one-star Rear Admiral, an appointment that required Congressional approval.  What stood in his way was an incident that occurred during that fateful day in 1987.


USS Saratoga


Timothy Dorsey


F14 Tomcats on deck


An F4 tanking


HUD film of the engagement


US Navy wings


Images under Creative Commons licence with thanks to the US Navy, US Air Force and the US Gov.