A pilot from the Hawaiian Raptors throws a Shaka sign, shortly after takeoff from Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, on his way to Nellis Air Force Base NV, to take part in a joint training April 20, 2015. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Aaron Oelrich/Released)
Germany will retire its last operational McDonnell Douglas F-4F Phantom IIs on 29 June,with the veteran type's duties having been assumed by Eurofighter units.Final German examples are operated by the air force's JG 71 "Richthofen" squadron, which was also first to begin flying the type,in March 1974. Delivered in 1973,its first F-4F, 37+01,received a special livery for the occasion.Total of 263 Phantoms acquired by Germany,including 88 in RF-4E reconnaissance configuration,from 1971.