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Aviation is a small world

10 October 2011

Aviation is a small world

There was one day in particular my father and I were driving back home after completing an errand. The street we lived on was quite long with a curve near the upper portion. As we were rounding the curve we both heard— “JOE” — from our left. Dad continued driving and, as I looked back to see who was calling out, he said that it must be for me since he didn’t know anyone on this part of our street.

I said I did not either and the guy yelling was much older than me.

We turned around and drove back to meet a middle-aged man – Harry Bryant. Dad and he had served together in Germany when both were in the Army. Remarkably, Harry has both great eyes and a quick mind since he recognized Dad immediately though it was decades later. Later Dad mentioned that he thought Harry is the best helicopter pilot he knew. My Dad didn’t brag or pump things up, so when he said that Harry could autorotate on demand to any spot that could be seen those words carried great weight.

Small world.

The current (Oct–Dec 2011) issue of Un-Scramble – the newsletter of the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum, has several interesting articles with one particularly standing apart. N.C. “Bud” Evans writes a story behind a story. The Air & Space Smithsonian August 2011 issue describes a unique flight, by Bill Magruder, of a DC-8 which exceeded Mach 1. Bud piloted the pacer aircraft, an F-104 Starfighter, with the mission to fly in close and constant formation with the DC-8 so that his carefully calibrated instruments would collect the data for this historic flight. There is a photo of the F-104 and DC-8 in flight taken by another aircraft, an F-100 Super Sabre carrying the mission photographer.

The pilot of that F-100 was Al Crews who is now also with the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum, in the not large town of Titusville FL — with Bud.

Small world.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. 10 October 2011 10:11

    Enjoyed the memories, Joe – and the Un-Scrambled newsletter and Valiant Air Command web site!

    • travelforaircraft permalink
      10 October 2011 18:42

      Thanks Dave 🙂

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