‘Bitchin’ Betty’ says ‘bye bye’ to the F-18

Leslie Shook has flown every F-18 flight there ever was even though she doesn’t know how to fly.

But when retirement came from the Boeing company recently, a lot of F-18 pilots wanted to meet her. She’s the voice they call ‘Bitchin’ Betty,’ the voice that helps keep them from killing themselves in their machines.

According to a news release today from Boeing:

Leslie’s run as the voice behind the F-18 started as a happy accident. The F-15 contained the voice of the original ‘Bitchin’ Betty.’ Crews imported that voice into the F-18; but, additional calls were needed. Leslie was a media producer filling in as a sound engineer on the recording sessions. But, the talent couldn’t quite capture the sense of urgency needed for the job. “Betty’s got a cadence and a sharpness to it,” says Leslie. The program manager heard her directions and decided she was fit for the role—a role that has endured for the last two decades.

Though retired, her fame will continue as long as the planes are flying. She also has a beer named in her honor. “Bitchin’ Betty” beer is brewed at a brewery started by a couple of fighter jocks.