|Chuck Greenhill's Grumman J2F Duck aircraft, the only airworthy aircraft from the December 7, 1941, attack on Pearl Harbor, is featured during Friday morning's Warbirds in Review presentation.
Legendary pilots and aircraft of the past 75 years will take center stage again at AirVenture Oshkosh as the EAA Warbirds of America hosts its popular Warbirds in Review program for the 10th consecutive year in 2011. This year's lineup on Scotts Warbird Alley will feature several presentations as part of the week-long Centennial of Naval Aviation commemoration, as well salutes to the iconic Bob Hoover and the aircraft he is most associated with.
Started in 2002 as a showcase for special warbird aircraft, Warbirds in Review has grown to be one of AirVenture's most popular destinations. Programs delve into an aircraft's restoration, operation, and other aspects of owning a valued piece of history, but they also spotlight veterans who tell their personal stories about what it was like to fly the aircraft in combat, or support the operation as a ground crew member.
Connie Bowlin, EAA Warbirds of America director and founder/coordinator of the Warbirds in Review program, remarked, "It is an honor and a pleasure to work with the veterans, owners, pilots, restoration, and maintenance experts who are the keepers of these treasures - the 'Warbird' aircraft that tell the story of our history. This combined support is what makes Warbirds in Review successful."
The 2011 Warbirds in Review line-up is another testimonial to the generosity and enthusiasm of so many who support the Warbird motto, "Keep 'Em Flying." The program's goals are to showcase a variety of incredible aircraft and pay tribute to and honor those who served. Their behind-the-scenes stories are always entertaining, revealing the stamina and dedication of the owners and restorers who bring these special airplanes back to life, or give them new life.
The daily presentation times are 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Scotts Warbird Alley, next to the new Scotts Military Tribute display. (The schedule is subject to change.)
Here's the 2011 Warbirds in Review lineup:
Monday, July 25, 10 a.m. - PT-19 and 1944 OY-1 Lady Satin: Training aircraft and Liaison share the stage with a PT-19 joined by veteran Robert Fahnestock (Flying Cadet class 43A) and a 1944 OY-1 (L5-B) Lady Satin with veteran Thomas Rozga. Lt. Rozga, who flew this aircraft during the Battle of Iwo Jima in 1945, will be joined by the aircraft owners, Jerri and Chris Bergen.
Monday, July 25, 1 p.m. - Corsair with Medal of Honor recipient, U.S. Navy Capt. Thomas J. Hudner (ret.): This aircraft, owned by Doug Matthews, is painted like Capt. Hudner's aircraft that he flew and crash-landed in an attempt to save Ensign Jesse L. Brown. The MOH citation reads in part: "While attempting to rescue a squadron mate whose plane, struck by anti-aircraft fire and trailing smoke, was forced to land behind enemy lines ... fully aware of the extreme danger in landing on the rough, mountainous terrain and the scant hope of escape or survival in subzero temperature, he put his plane down skillfully in a deliberate wheels-up landing."
Tuesday, July 26, 10 a.m. - P-51 Ole Yeller and Shrike Commander featuring Bob Hoover: In celebration of "Bob Hoover Day," Scotts Warbird Alley will be filled with aircraft representative of Hoover's air show and flight testing career. This includes the signature yellow P-51 Ole Yeller, now owned by John Bagley, and the Shrike Commander that Bob Odegard has restored and painted in the Hoover air show scheme. (It's not a warbird, but for Hoover that's okay!)
Tuesday, July 26, 1 p.m. - P-51s Old Crow D and rare B models featuring Bud Anderson, Jack Roush, and Jim Hagedorn: Col C.E. "Bud" Anderson, who is appearing with P-51 owners Jack Roush and Jim Hagedorn, will tell you that it is an honor to have your paint scheme replicated. Fellow 357th Fighter Group pilots refer to Bud Anderson as the best pilot in the group. When he reflects on his combat experience, the audience understands why he is so respected and deserving of this honor.
Wednesday, July 27, 10 a.m. - L-19 Bird Dog and OH-6A Loach: Recognizing our Vietnam veterans is special. By featuring the L-19 Bird Dog, owned by Randy Mayville, and the men who flew them in Vietnam, we recognize "ordinary men doing extraordinary things" - a little airplane doing a big job. Veteran Jeff Bales was shot down on his first mission in the L-19. His brother, Peter, also flew in Vietnam and will present his OH-6A Loach. Veterans Charlie Finch and Doc Clement, who flew with the 220th Catkillers in Vietnam, will share many of the stories from their must-read book, A Hundred Feet Over Hell.
Wednesday, July 27, 1 p.m. - Navy Day: In celebration of Navy Day and the week-long Centennial of Naval Aviation commemoration, featured Navy aircraft will be F8F Bearcat adorned with a Blue Angels paint scheme, F7F Tigercat, and award-winning SNJ Tailhook trainer. Scotts Warbird Alley will be filled with an assortment of Navy aircraft throughout the week, including FM2 Wildcat, F4U Corsairs, PV-2 Harpoon, Grumman J2F Duck, PB4Y-2, rare Temco Pinto, and much more.
Thursday, July 28, 10 a.m. - FM2 Wildcat: Mike Gillian will present his FM2 Wildcat, which played an important role in World War II as the first carrier-based fighter in the Pacific theatre. Called the "Wilder Wildcat," the FM2 is a development of the original model made lighter and more powerful in order to operate from escort carriers.
Thursday, July 28, 1 p.m. - F4U Corsair: For its poignant family connection and its powerful wartime history, this F4U-4 Corsair BuNo 97143 is one of the most significant resurrections in recent years. Owned by the Tobul family, Jim Tobul will be joined for this presentation by Lenny DeFranco, a family friend and Korean War crew chief of this very aircraft.
Friday, July 29, 10 a.m. - Rare 1939 Grumman J2F Duck: This extremely rare and authentic award-winning warbird, owned and operated by Chuck Greenhill, is the only airworthy aircraft from the December 7, 1941, attack on Pearl Harbor.
Friday, July 29, 1 p.m. - Fw 190s and Spitfire featuring Bob Hoover: This is sure to be one of the favorites for 2011 as Bob Hoover will join us for a second time. This program will focus on Bob Hoover's World War II service with the appearance of two Fw 190s, one owned by Rudy Frasca and the other by Dan Kirkland, along with Frasca's Spitfire. Hoover will speak about the significance of these aircraft to him in World War II, and the owners will speak about the acquisition and restoration of these unique aircraft.
Saturday, July 30, 10 a.m. - Fairey Swordfish Mk III and Vintage Wings of Canada: Among the several rare Vintage Wings of Canada aircraft displayed, the Fairey Swordfish Mk III will be the star of this presentation. The Swordfish was a large, slow biplane, ideal for actions off carrier decks. The structure was largely metal, covered with fabric. One possible attendee is 91-year-old Commander Terry Goddard, who served with the Royal Navy and is one of the few living Swordfish airmen who participated in the crippling attack on the Bismarck.
Saturday, July 30, 1 p.m. - "Return of the T-34s": T-34 A & B models are scheduled as part of this program highlighting the Air Force and Navy models of the aircraft. Scheduled to appear is Joe Engle, who flew the A model in pilot training and continued his aviation career as a test pilot before becoming a shuttle commander. Look for a lively debate of Air Force vs. Navy and A model vs. B model that's certain to be entertaining.
Sunday, July 31, 10 a.m. - Saluting the Tuskegee Airmen: Tuskegee Airmen will be recognized by the appearance of an F-16 from the Alabama Air National Guard, which continues the "red tail" heritage of the Tuskegee Airmen. Iraq War combat veteran pilots from the Alabama Air National Guard will be on hand with their F-16, and will be joined by Brian Smith and his Tuskegee T-6.
Sunday, July 31, 1 p.m. - T-6s and the AeroShell Aerobatic Team: A special treat for the final presentation of 2011. Three team members will share their unique perspective of owning and flying the North American T-6. To the air show spectator, their show is entertaining and awe-inspiring. Hear about the T-6's challenging characteristics that earn the AeroShell Aerobatics Team the respect of all T-6 pilots.