The McDonnell Douglas (now Boeing) F/A-18 Hornet is a supersonic twin engine all-weather
night fighter and attack aircraft. The F/A-18s first flew in November 1978 and the first production
flight on April 12, 1980. The first 380 aircraft were F/A-18As and in September 1987 production
switched to the F/A-18C. Variants A and C are single-seat aircraft while B and D are tandem-
seats. The Hornet can operate from either aircraft carriers or land bases with the capability of in
flight refueling. A total of 1,480 A-D variants were built.
CF-18A Hornet 188761 was delivered on April 10, 1986 and operated with the No. 439 Squadron
in Europe. In 1987 the aircraft suffered damage but was repaired and returned to service. In 1995
188761 returned to Canada with the No. 441 TFS at CFB Cold Lake. In 2004 the aircraft was
again damaged and returned to service. On July 6, 2006 No. 416 and No. 441 TFSs consolidated
forming the No. 409 Nighthawk Squadron and 188761 received a special No. 409 Squadron
scheme, “Night Mare 01” to commemorate the occasion.