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Nellis hosting funeral for Vietnam combat pilot

Posted - Jan. 14, 2010 at 3:06 p.m.

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NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. (AP) -- A funeral is set at Nellis Air Force Base with full military honors and fly-overs by the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds for a Vietnam combat pilot whose remains were recently identified.

Tech. Sgt. Russell Martin says Nellis officials expect several hundred invited family, friends and military members at the Thursday service for Maj. Russell C. Goodman in a Thunderbird hangar.

Goodman was from Salt Lake City. He was a member of the Thunderbirds air demonstration squadron at Nellis on assignment with a Navy air combat unit aboard the USS Enterprise when his F-4B Phantom was shot down Feb. 20, 1967, in Vietnam.

His navigator, Navy Lt. Gary L. Thornton, survived the crash and was a prisoner of war until 1973. Martin says Thornton will attend the funeral.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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