F-101 Voodoo Fighter

Three versions of the F-101 Voodoo fighter fly in formationThe McDonnell Voodoo was a supersonic fighter designed to escort bombers and serve as a fighter bomber, an all-weather interceptor and a photoreconnaissance aircraft. It served during the Cuban Missile Crisis and during the Vietnam War.

It began as the XF-88 all-weather interceptor (fighter), which first flew at Muroc Dry Lake Air Base, Calif., in 1948. The two prototypes evolved into the F-101 Voodoo.

McDonnell delivered 807 F-101 Voodoos, designed as long-range, twinjet fighters to escort bombers, attack distant targets and provide close support for ground troops. Attack fighter, interceptor and reconnaissance versions served with the U.S. Air Force Strategic Air, Air Defense and Tactical Air Commands and in Canada.

Voodoo versions included the F-101A fighter-bomber; the F-101B two-seat, long-range interceptor; the RF-101A photoreconnaissance version; the RF-101C single-seat reconnaissance version; the TF-101B trainer version; the F-101C -- an upgraded F-101A; and the CF-101F -- transferred under license from the United States to the Royal Canadian Air Force.

In Operation Firewall on Dec. 12, 1957, an F-101A fighter-bomber set a world speed record of 1,207 mph. In Operation Sun Run in 1957, an RF-101 raced from Los Angeles, Calif., to New York and back to Los Angeles in a record time of 6 hours 46 minutes.

The last Voodoo retired in 1986.

First flight: Sept. 29, 1954
Wingspan: 39 feet 8 inches
Length: 67 feet 5 inches
Height: 18 feet
Weight: 48,120 pounds
Speed (max.): 1,009 mph
Ceiling: 38,900 feet
Power plant: Two 15,000-pound-thrust Pratt & Whitney J57-P-13 axial-flow turbojets
Accommodation: One crew
Armament: Four 20 mm cannons, low-altitude bombing systems, 1,620-pound bomb or 3,721-pound nuclear bomb