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LCDR Mark "Crunchy" Burgess, USN (ret)


Flight Hours: 3800 hours

Combat Hours 256 hours

530 Traps

Mark is a Naval Academy graduate and career Naval Officer who flew three combat tours in F-14 Tomcats.  His first tour was flying F-14A’s with VF-24 “Renegades” onboard the USS Nimitz.  His second was in the F-14D with VF-2 “Bounty Hunters” aboard USS Constellation, both in support of Operation Southern Watch over Iraq. Mark then spent the next 3 years as an F-14 A/B/D Instructor pilot with VF-101 “Grim Reapers”, at NAS Oceana, VA.  During this tour he also served as the Navy’s lead F-14 Demonstration Pilot for the 2000 and 2001 airshow seasons, performing at airshows across the United States and Canada.


His final tour was with VF-31 “Tomcatters” where he completed a 10-month deployment aboard USS Lincoln in support of Operation Enduring Freedom over Afghanistan, and Operation Iraqi Freedom over Iraq.  He saw extensive combat operations as a Forward Air Control (Airborne) supporting Army and Marine Corps troops during the march to take Baghdad.

After retiring from the Navy in 2010, Mark joined the Warrior Aviation team and became the lead pilot for the Warrior Flight Team.  The Warrior Flight Team has performed in over 75 airshows over the past five years, helping to raise awareness of the plight of our returning wounded veterans.

Bill "Pirate" Mills

Bill graduated from United States Naval Academy in 1986. He was the first nugget naval aviator to be selected to fly F-18 Hornets.  Bill served as a combat pilot and completed Two Fleet Tours in the Mediterranean with VFA 132 “Privateers” deployed aboard USS Coral Sea (CV-43) and USS Forrestal (CV-59) earning “Top Hook” honors.  Mills was selected and attended the prestigious US Navy’s Fighter Weapons School, “Top Gun” at NAS Miramar in September and October of 1990 and went on to fly 16 Combat Sorties over Northern Iraq in support of Operation Desert Storm and Provide Comfort.


Following his combat tour with the “Privateers”, Bill became an FA-18 flight instructor for the East Coast Replacement Air Group ( RAG) training squadron VFA-106 “Gladiators” at NAS Cecil Field while simultaneously serving as instructor and evaluator for the station’s C-12 (King Air B-200) logistics support aircraft. During that time Bill was also the East Coast Nuclear Weapons delivery instructor for all tactical aircraft authorized to deploy air launched nuclear weapons in the Navy’s inventory.


Bill amassed over 1,300 FA-18 flight hours, over 3,300 total hours and 289 carrier arrested landings between 1987-1994.

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Major Geoff "Hak" Hickman, USAF (ret)

Graduating from the US Air Force Academy and the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, Hak spent 12 years of active duty flying F-16s after completing flight school at Laughlin AFB, TX. He flew 
F-16s operational during multiple assignments at Shaw AFB, SC. serving as both an instructor and as a flight examiner. Hak also deployed for multiple contingency  operations in addition to flying combat missions over the former Yugoslavia and Iraq. From 2004-2005 Hak served as the USAF's "Viper East" F-16 East Coast Demonstration Team Commander and demonstration pilot. Over a two year period he flew tactical demonstrations at 77 air show sites across the United States, Canada and Europe for over 17 million spectators. Hak also gave countless presentations to local dignitaries and organizations as well as 
providing media interviews to every format.

During his 12 year Air Force career, Hak accumulated over 1,800 flight hours in F-16s and has over 2,500 total flight hours. Hak is also Type Rated in F-104 Starfighters flying out of the Kennedy Space Center, Fla. 
He holds an ATP and resides in the Wash DC area with his wife and children.
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Pat "Villain" Marsh

Pat Marsh is a native of the beaches of San Diego and the son of a career Naval Aviator. He is a business owner who has been flying since 1987, holds a commercial pilots certificate with an instrument rating and is a FAST rated formation pilot.


He flew under contract with the Naval Test Pilot School, Patuxent River, Maryland, from 1997-2000 and has been flying airshows since 1994. Owner of the Vandy 1 black jet, he is the founder of Vandy 1 and a co-founder of Warrior Aviation. He has over 2000 flight hours in various warbirds, including L-39s and Russian Yaks.

Lt Col Doug "Dagwood" Woodley, USAF (ret)

Flight Hours: Over 1,600 hours

Combat Hours: 450 hours


A native of Pensacola, Florida, and son of a Naval Aviator, Doug was commissioned in 1999. Assigned flight training at NAS Pensacola he earned his wings in 2000 and has flown military aircraft to include T-34C,

T-1A, T-39G/N, T-2C, F-15, F-16, B-1B and EA-6B. He deployed, while flying the B-1 Lancer, in support of Operations Enduring and Iraqi Freedom. He was also carrier qualified in the EA-6B Prowler and deployed aboard the USS Nimitz and John C. Stennis. 


He has over 1600 flight hours, including 450 hours in combat operations in Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. He currently resides in the Washington DC area. He acts as the flight team narrator and Board President for the Warrior Flight Team.


Michael "Hammer" Casey


Hammer hails from Basking Ridge New Jersey and joined the United States Navy directly after graduating from high school. He attended recruit training command at Great Lakes, Minnesota for his basic training. Subsequently, he was sent to the Naval Air Station Millington ,Tennessee for his “A” school, Aviation Ordinance training. (IYAOYAS) After graduating at the top of his class he was able to select a coveted slot with  an F-14 Fighter squadron , VF-74 , the Bedevilers, at NAS Oceana in Virginia Beach Virginia. VF-74 was deployed with the USS Saratoga to the Mediterranean and Indian Oceans.


When not volunteering with the warrior flight team Mr. Casey is currently employed as a Safety Officer with the Washington Metropolitan Transportation Authority.


CDR Bill "Pinch" Paisley, USNR (ret)

Flight Hours: 1250


A native of Opelika, Alabama, and the proud son of a career Navy Aviator, CDR Bill "Pinch" Paisley earned his Wings of Gold in 1986. Pinch reported to VF-101 in Virginia Beach, VA for F-14 RIO training. His first fleet tour was with the World Famous Tophatters of Fighter Squadron 14 (VF-14) on board USS John F Kennedy. He later spent a tour with the Defense Plant Representative Office at Grumman Aerospace flying the F-14 D Tomcat.


Pinch concluded his Navy active duty as a catapult officer on USS Dwight D Eisenhower and accumulated over 1250 flight hours, 1000 in the F-14 A, B and D Tomcats. He currently resides the northern Virginia area and works for the US Navy in Modeling and Simulation.

Lt Col Dane "Fitz" Nielsen, USAF (ret)


Lt Col Dane Nielsen grew up in Brigham City, Utah, and resides in Washington D.C.  Dane is a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy and has over 5000 hours of flying time in numerous aircraft.  He is a Command Pilot in the U. S. Air Force stationed at Joint Base Andrews, MD.  In his final assignment, he flew the C-20B, C-37A and C-37B (military versions of the Gulfstream III, V and 550 business jets) as an instructor/evaluator pilot in the 89th Airlift Wing.   The 89th AW provides worldwide transportation to America’s leaders including the Vice President, First Lady of the United States, Secretary of State and Secretary of Defense as well as other military and diplomatic VIPs.  Prior to this assignment, Lt Col Nielsen flew aeromedical evacuation flights in the C-9, and supported combat operations in Middle East and Afghanistan flying the KC-10.

Lt Col Charlie "V+12" Vandenbossche

Born in Detroit and raised in Mt. Clemens, just north of Detroit, Charlie has been interested in all things aviation since he was a teenager. He graduated from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Florida. He earned his wings of silver in 1989, and went on to serve as a T-38 Talon Instructor Pilot, and then to fly the B-1B Lancer. He later transferred to the Arkansas Air National Guard to fly the F-16, while also flying with northwest Airlines, in the DC-9. and accepting a position with Northwest Airlines (NWA) as a commercial pilot. He completed his NWA DC-9 training followed shortly after by F-16 training in early 2001. He is a veteran of Operations Allied Force, Southern Watch, Allied Force. Charlie has amassed over 4,000 flight hours in the B-1, F-16, DC-9, F-15, L-29, L-39, L-90, BAC-167, Provost, IAR-823, A-29, C-172, C-182, Piper Cub, CJ-6, TT-1 and Yak-52. 

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