Aviation History

Remembering Captain Carroll “Lex” Fairfax LeFon, the Founder of Neptunus Lex Blog and Patriarch of online Aviation Communities

Captain Carroll “Lex” Fairfax LeFon, the Founder of Neptunus Lex Blog, was a Naval Aviator, Husband, Father, and Patriarch of an online community which still exists to this day.

I first found the Neptunus Lex blog while looking up the F-22 vs Super Hornet HUD guns kill footage. He had the photo I was looking for, and as I read his blog, I was instantly hooked. While I was flying as a Human Yo-Yo with endless laps in the pattern teaching Navy IFS students how to fly and safely take off and land, I used to check out his blog between flights. It was a way to both unwind and appreciate what I was doing.

One flying day 10 years ago, I went to the blog page, saw a missing man formation of Blue Angels and the realization of what happened hit me right in the guts. Though I had never met the man, his writing and the quality of it had inspired me to attempt to do the same someday.

SECNAV Ray Mabus wrote, “I mourn the passing of a great naval aviator, a professional analyst of all things naval, and a soulful and compelling writer of poetry and prose.”

Masthead to the Neptunus Lex blog, as preserved by the Lexicans, his tribute group, which still keeps the majority of his blog archive. The patches on the masthead shows his entire flying Career, from VFA-25, through the Blackbirds, World Famous Golden Dragons, TOPGUN and finally his command tour as CO of the Mighty Shrikes.

His unpublished novel “Rhythms” about a day in the life of an Aircraft Carrier crew is a masterpiece, something which shows better than just about anything ever written what life is really like aboard the Boat.

The passage below, featured on The Lexicans, clearly shows the Man’s amazing writing skills;

‘So halfway round the world he checks outside for traffic once again before bowing his head and beginning to re-read her last letter. Trying to feel her in its tangible presence, imagining her arm across the dining room table, holding down a pad of stationary as she writes him one of her maddeningly enchanting letters. In that exact moment, sixteen time zones and half the world away, she is doing precisely that, with an impish half-smile in her face and feeling an internal glow of warmth from the graphic memory she is relating. Down the hall two children slumber, temporarily fatherless, dreaming children’s dreams.

Captain Carroll “Lex” Fairfax LeFon

‘For each interrupted couple on a six-month deployment there are tens, perhaps hundreds of such moments of unlikely synchronicity, and the true tragedy is that each will pass unnoticed and therefore unlamented into the endlessly unfolding wale of indifferent time.’

Lex was a Naval Aviator, Husband, Father, and Patriarch of an online community which still exists to this day. Only the best get honored in such a way. He gained his callsign Lex thanks to a rather hilarious incident related on The Lexicans;

‘Being tired, I put my uniform together looking in the mirror, where it looked just right. I headed on down to the squadron ready room with five minutes to spare (and a smile on my face!) only to be accosted immediately by the squadron commander: “What, are you dyslexic or something?”

The Patch. Lex was Executive officer of “the School.” Far more than the film showed, assignment to Fighter Weapons school as a student is a Graduate Level Course in Fighter Tactics, assignment as an instructor there can be seen as a PhD level Subject Matter Expert posting. Note: Lex would always spell the School’s name as TOPGUN, one word, ALL CAPS. That is the correct name for the Navy’s Fighter Weapons School, and clearly distinguishes the real TOPGUN school from the film Top Gun.

‘“Pardon me?”

‘“Your wings are on the wrong side of your uniform!”

‘D’oh!

‘So that got abbreviated to “Lex” ultimately, and thankfully has never changed since. I felt relieved actually, the callsign running second in the competition was “Fifi.”

This print is available in multiple sizes from AircraftProfilePrints.com – CLICK HERE TO GET YOURS. F/A-18C Hornet VFA-34 Blue Blasters, NE400 / 165403 / 2017

So here’s to You Neptunus Lex, Captain Carroll “Lex” Fairfax LeFon, USN. You have inspired an entire community and you are missed by all who remember you. Today I shall hoist a Guinness in your honor “For Strength.”

You live on in the hearts of all who know you, and we know you are up there with some of the best Aviators ever to fly. From me personally, a fond Aloha, even though I never knew you any other way than from your writing.

Photo credit: U.S. Navy

This model is available from AirModels – CLICK HERE TO GET YOURS
William Cobb

Mr. William Cobb is a licensed Instrument Flight Instructor in Single and Multi Engine Airplanes who is the founder and director of the Pensacola Aerospace Museum. Mr. Cobb spent from 2008 to 2015 instructing for the U.S. Navy's Initial Flight Screening program. After 8 years of full time Flight Instruction, Mr. Cobb started his own Commercial Drone Business, obtaining the first FAA Part 107 certification in his FAA region. Subsequent Drone work led to his becoming involved in Film Production work, and his establishing the Pensacola Aerospace Museum, an entity dedicated to honoring the memory of all those who ever gave their lives to flight.

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  • I was one of those readers way back when and am a proud Lexican. He was fun to read, he was informative, his writing drew pictures in my mind. He was VERY good. He shared navy life, personal life (while still keeping it "personal"), and spiritual life. And you are right; if the name of the blog was the bait, "RHYTHMS" was the hook. Seeing that missing man formation that morning took my breath in disbelief. As did you, I knew him only by his writing. But he was our friend.

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