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On This Day in Aviation History

On This Day in Aviation History

1896 – Birth of Harold Anthony “Doc” Oaks, a Canadian World War I flying ace and bush aviation pioneer. 1919 – First flight of the Sopwith Snark (shown above), a prototype British triplane fighter. 1941 – Alma Heflin, first American female test pilot for standard production aircraft, made her first test flight for the Piper […]
X-47B Back on Deck for Testing

X-47B Back on Deck for Testing

The U.S. Navy showcased what one senior officer said was the “sausage being made during test and evaluation” this past weekend as one of its Unmanned Combat Air System (UCAS) Demonstrators experienced an anomaly during a media tour aboard the U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt. The anomaly was resolved quickly with a 90-min. reboot of the Northrop […]

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National Naval Aviation Museum Turns 50

National Naval Aviation Museum Turns 50

Many who have admired the power and precision behind the synchronized aerobatic maneuvers of the U.S. Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron known as the Blue Angels have dreamed of taking to the skies in one of those distinctive blue Boeing F/A-18 Hornets themselves. It’s possible to get the experience at the National Naval Aviation Museum at […]
In Memoriam: A Canadian Airman’s Story

In Memoriam: A Canadian Airman’s Story

The land appears more blue than green; the lakes splashed randomly amidst the untamed forest seemingly go on forever. This is northern Manitoba. They look like white sentinels; the ramrod straight headstones rising from the manicured lawn seemingly never end. This is England’s Harrogate (Stonefall) Cemetery. That a line can be drawn from one to the […]

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U.K. Accepts Its First RC-135 Rivet Joint

U.K. Accepts Its First RC-135 Rivet Joint

The first Boeing RC-135W Rivet Joint intelligence-gathering aircraft for the Royal Air Force (RAF) has been delivered to its main operating base at RAF Waddington. The aircraft – ZZ664 – arrived at Waddington on Nov. 12 after a flight from Majors Field, Greenville, Texas via Bangor, Maine. The aircraft, which was converted from a 1964-vintage […]
Iruma: Japan’s Hidden Aviation Museum

Iruma: Japan’s Hidden Aviation Museum

Tucked inside a hangar behind one of this country’s best aviation museums is a sight few people get to see: The first aircraft to fly above Japan. The Henry Farman biplane and a kamikaze glider are among the many highlights at the hangar and museum on the Japan Air Self-Defense Force’s Iruma Air Base northwest […]

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On This Day in Aviation History

On This Day in Aviation History

1909 – Birth of Noel Francis Parrish, U.S. Air Force pilot, commander of the  Tuskegee Airmen in World War II and brigadier general after the Korean War. 1935 – Man first sees the Earth’s curvature when the National Geographic Society and the U.S. Army Air Corps launch their new helium-filled, high-altitude balloon “Explorer II.” It […]
Air Force Museum Brings Vets Together

Air Force Museum Brings Vets Together

Paul Young rarely talked about his service during World War II – about the North American B-25 Mitchell bomber he piloted, about his 57 missions, about the dangers he faced or the fears he overcame. “Some things you just don’t talk about,” he said. But Susan Frymier had a hunch that if she could journey […]

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Brother Details Bombardier’s Story

Brother Details Bombardier’s Story

Bill Heath was barely 21 back in the fall of 1943 when he arrived at Thorpe Abbots airfield in southeastern England, a second lieutenant reporting for duty as a Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress bombardier. It was the early days of the U.S. Army’s controversial daylight bombing campaign over Nazi-occupied Europe. The Newport, Wash., kid was […]
T-6 Pilots: Caretakers of History

T-6 Pilots: Caretakers of History

John Ockenfels sits poised in the cockpit of his vibrant yellow North American T-6 Texan airplane, the eyes of three fellow pilots glued to him. As he raises his hand, the engine of his slumbering 1940s warbird kicks to life. The other pilots follow suit. A soft hiccup and a plume of white smoke flow […]
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