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Ruff Stuff

Jul 21, 2014 No Comments

Memories of an Early War South Pacific Fighter Pilot By the time newly minted U.S. fighter pilots entered WW II in late 1941, they faced a Japanese adversary whose pilots had been flying combat since 1937. Not only were these “flying Samurai” pilots old hats, but they also flew a trump card in the form [...]

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General Delivery

Jul 21, 2014 No Comments

From Gliders to the Guinea Short Lines When I was a senior in high school in 1942, I took advantage of the Civilian Pilot Training Program and earned my pilots license flying Waco UPF- 7s and PT-17s off a red dusty Oklahoma airfield near my hometown. As I waited to be called to active duty, [...]

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Idiot’s Loop

Jul 18, 2014 No Comments

The Day I Nuked Los Angeles During the early 1950s, I fooled around with football, girls, and socializing while I was attending college and really didn’t know what I wanted to do in my life. When I saw the Korean War movie The Bridges at Toko-Ri, I knew right then I wanted to be a [...]

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On This Day in Aviation History

Jul 18, 2014 No Comments

1941 – The first Boeing B-17 Flying Fortresses fly into combat, serving with the \ Royal Air Force on a daylight bombing raid from 30,000 feet against Wilhelmshaven, Germany. 1950 – Douglas AD Skyraiders and Vought F4U Corsairs from the USS Valley Forge (CV-45) strike targets near Pyongyang, Korea, then completely destroy an oil refinery at Wonsan; [...]

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Air Show Report: Flying Legends 2014

Jul 18, 2014 No Comments

Standing at any of the runway ends during the Duxford, England, air shows is a stunning experience. Either you get to see the aircraft turning in onto the display line or they make you feel their massive horse powers while passing you on take-off. Action is guaranteed! If you look around the airfield there are [...]

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On This Day in Aviation History

Jul 17, 2014 No Comments

1892 – Birth of Edwin Harris Dunning (shown), British Royal Naval Air Service pilot and the first person to land an aircraft on a moving ship. 1917 – Death of Luigi Olivi, Italian World War I flying ace, killed in action in his SPAD S.VII. 1949 – First flight of the Vickers Varsity, a British twin-engine crew trainer operated by the [...]

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B-2 Turns 25, Set to Get Upgrades

Jul 17, 2014 No Comments

The most intimidating aircraft in the world is 25 years old this week and is about to become even more advanced. The nation’s fleet of B-2 stealth bombers, the pride of Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri, is poised to get nearly $10 billion in upgrades over the next several years to ensure it remains the most [...]

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On This Day in Aviation History

Jul 16, 2014 No Comments

1910 – First flight of the Duigan biplane (shown), which made the first powered flight by an aircraft designed and built in Australia. 1927 – Ernie Smith and Emory Bronte complete the first civilian non-stop flight from North America to the Hawaiian Islands when their Travel Air monoplane, the City of Oakland, crashes on Molokai after a flight [...]

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