Special Markings : 50° Stormo / 155° Gruppo Anniversary Black Panther Tornado
Claudio Toselli contributed these photos of this Italian Tornado pained in anniversary scheme.
On September 9th, 2006, the Italian Air Force 50° Stormo "G. Graffer" celebrated 70 years of its constitution and the 65 year anniversary of the 155° Gruppo E.T.S. (Electronic Warfare Tactical Suppression) "Pantere Nere" (Black Panthers).
For this year's occasion the Tornado IDS/HARM MM7027 50-51 was present wearing a special colour scheme. It is painted all metal with the gladio (roman sword) on its tail, the symbol of 50°Stormo, and the black panther claw, the symbol of 155° Gruppo. The Gruppo carries out SEAD (Suppression of Enemy Air Defence) missions with 15 Tornado IT-ECR (Italian Electronic Combat Reconnaissance variant of the Tornado), obtained via the conversion of as many IDS aircraft with the implementation of the AGM-88 HARM anti-radiation missile.
This was the third meeting; the first took place in 1967 when the Italian Ministry of Defence reconstituted the 50° Stormo Caccia Bombardieri (Fighter Bomber Wing) at the San Damiano military airport in Piacenza with its dependence the 155°Gruppo. The second meeting took place in 1992. In the 2002 meeting the Black Panthers celebrated its 60 year anniversary with the wing's first specially painted Tornado (IDS/HARM MM7017 50-53), pictured on the left here.
Report and photos by Claudio Toselli ( view portfolio )
Last Modified: 1 April 2013