When I bicycle past KORL on my way to work, I pass Col Joe Kittenger Park


Well-Known Member
He was crazy man lol He also has a Mig-21 kill from Vietnam and was later also shot down by a Mig-21, becoming a POW for the last 8-9 months of the war.


Resident Iconoclast
The chief pilot at my company is good friends with Joe Kittinger. He's got a lot of interesting stories about him.


Well-Known Member
Col. Kittinger was the Vice Wing Commander of the 48th TAC Fighter Wing when I was stationed as a controller at RAF Lakenheath back during '76-'77. Met the man several times—he would come up into the tower and chat with us during Wing down time. Rather nice fellow, talkative, and had flaming red hair back then.

I was a two-striper back then, and rather in awe of the man—between being a former POW and all his records in the Guinness Book and all. I still remember rooting for him during his post Air Force record breaking flight to become the first person to solo pilot a gas balloon across the Atlantic.

Fascinating guy.