The inside story of how a US Navy pilot shot down a Syrian jet

RENO, Nev. ? He sipped coffee at nearly 700 miles per hour, 20,000 feet above the Earth, roaring toward the battle of Raqqa.

Navy Lt. Cmdr. Michael ?M.O.B.? Tremel had a hunch the day?s mission would be different than the others he had flown into the gut of war-ravaged Syria, dropping bombs to protect friendly forces in the fight against the Islamic State.

But the Pennsylvania native carried no inkling that this operation on June 18, 2017, would secure his own place among naval aviation icons.