An F-16 fighter pilot grew a bulletproof mustache to honor a great fighter pilot and became Robin Olds’s look-alike.
Thomas “MET” Kristensen is a combat pilot of the Royal Danish Air Force.
Even though his name may be new to you, he’s actually quite famous, as “MET” is the man behind the world-famous Fox-2 selfie shot while he was firing an AIM-9 Sidewinder air-to-air missile from an RDAF F-16.
In an email to The Aviationist, Kristensen explains:
“I’ve just been deployed in Estonia with the Royal Danish Air Force F-16 detachment, to carry out air policing over the Baltic States. In this context, I acquired myself a bulletproof mustache in honor of a great fighter pilot who introduced it during the Vietnam War.”
The great pilot mentioned by “MET” is Robin Olds, a U.S. Air Force ace, with a combined total of 17 victories in World War II and the Vietnam War.
Olds, who retired as Brig. Gen. in 1973 and died in 2007 at the age of 84 (you can find many websites, books about him and his career), was also famous for the mustache he grew in Vietnam. The Wiki page has an entire section about Olds’s handlebar mustache.
Kristensen grew his own mustache to honor the legendary pilot and, as you can see in the pictures taken during the Baltic Air Policing deployment by photographer Casper Tybjerg, a Nikon Ambassador, the similarity with the original shots of Robin Olds is astounding.
Left is Col. Robin Olds (image from Wiki), right is “MET”.
Image credit: Casper Tybjerg and Wikipedia (via Thomas Kristensen)
I met MET yesterday, and the moustache was gone!
The thing on his left hip is the connector for the air for the G-suit.
Olds was the man.