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Colonel Alan Fisher Inducted into the Society of Daedalians

FASF Members in action . . .

At the recent September monthly meeting, held in the El Paso Club atop the Chase Bank Building in downtown El Paso, the local Daedalian Flight #24 welcomed its newest member.

The welcome was officially given by former USAF pilot and long time FASF member, Flight Captain Roger Nichols, after whose father, General Franklin A. Nichols, Flight 24 was named.  General Nichols flew in WWII, was an ace, and also one of the only pilots able to get aloft to fight the attacking marauders during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, on December 7, 1941.

The Order of Daedalians Aviation fraternal society was organized by American military aviators who had fought in World War I.

The new member was none other than our own Colonel Alan Fisher, of Las Cruces, NM, who retired as an Air Force Command pilot and from his USAF career, while the commanding officer of the New Mexico State University (NMSU) AFROTC unit, the same unit commanded until 2016 by one of our current Trustees, Colonel Ira Cline. 

The two photos below were taken by another long time FASF member and fellow Daedalian, former U.S. Naval aviator, Roger Springstead.

Flight Captain Roger Nichols (L) congratulating Colonel Alan Fisher (R). Both men are long time members of the FASF.

Alan, in addition to his current occupation as an independent Pecan Grower near Las Cruces, NM, is active with the Las Cruces Composite Civil Air Patrol Squadron (CAP) and was once its commander, as well.  He is one of the CAP unit’s most active mission pilots.  The meeting at which Colonel Fisher was inducted, featured a presentation by Monica Lombraña, A.A.E., the Director of the El Paso International Airport, who is pictured (below photo) in front of her presentation’s opening screen with Flight Captain Roger Nichols.

        Roger Nichols (L) with Program Presenter, Monica Lombraña, Director of the El Paso International Airport

Fastest FASF Member and Advisor Just Slowed Way Down

Advisor, General Patrick J. Halloran, struck by car while crossing street in his hometown of Colorado Springs, CO.

Ten days ago, the first of July 2017, while crossing the street, the General (pictured as a Colonel at left) was hit by a speeding automobile and seriously injured, suffering fractures to both hips and 9 broken ribs. Although hardly comfortable, he has nevertheless emailed your editor some advice on an aviation matter, as though nothing had happened.

This musician turned accomplished military and civilian aviator, continues to fly to this day.

The General was the second former CO of the First Aero Squadron to join the ranks of our Board of Advisors.  Colonel Chi Chi Rodriguez was the first.

The General is one of Minnesota’s most distinguished aviators, and has been honored by special displays concerning his unusual career in the Minnesota Military Museum.

After graduating from Chatfield (Minnesota) High School in 1946, he attended the MacPhail Conservatory of Music in Minneapolis for several years before enlisting in the Air Force in 1949.

Early years as a pilot. When he joined the Air Force, Halloran became an Aviation Cadet. He received his wings and officer’s commission in September of 1950, graduating at Williams Air Force Base, AZ. He spent his first seven years flying F-84 jet fighters from bases in Georgia, Maine, Oklahoma, England, Alaska, Puerto Rico and Japan. He also flew 100 combat missions in the F-84 over North Korea in 1952.

Reconnaissance. In 1956 he was selected for the first group of pilots to fly the new, secret U-2 high altitude reconnaissance aircraft for the Air Force. The U-2 flew at altitudes of over 70,000 feet and carried enough fuel for ten hours of flight. In 1965, he became one of the first pilots to fly the new, long-range, Mach 3 SR-71 “Blackbird,” an aircraft he then flew for almost eight years. The SR-71 was the fastest, highest flying jet aircraft in the world, cruising at over 2000 mph at over 85,000 feet and with a range of over 3,000 miles. The SR-71 could accelerate so fast that it was able to out fly surface-to-air missiles. Halloran accumulated nearly 600 hours in the SR-71. He flew missions over Cuba in the U-2 and the SR-71 Blackbird over Vietnam in both the U-2 and the SR-71.

P.J Halloran in Space Suit by SR-71

The General, in his space suit posing in front of the world’s fastest jet, the SR-71 Blackbird. He was honored to be one of its select pilots.

In 1971 he received his Bachelor of Arts degree in social science from Troy State University in Alabama and also completed the Air War College, Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, as a distinguished graduate.

Command and Staff. In 1969 Halloran was appointed commander of the 1st Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron (First Aero Squadron), the first of several high-level command and staff assignments that took him to various headquarters, including 3rd Air Division in Guam, 15th Air Force in California, and Strategic Air Command in Nebraska. His final assignment was in the Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, in the Pentagon.

Retirement. Halloran retired in 1983 with over 8,000 hours of flying time in the military and 34 years of service. He has over 12,000 hours of total flying time. He was inducted into the Minnesota Aviation Hall of Fame in 2006 and now lives in Colorado Springs.  He remains actively involved in the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA), of which he is a long time member.  Over the years he has also flown some famous civilian airplanes, including the famous pre WWII racer, the the famed Schoenfeldt “Firecracker” race plane (seen immediately below left), the same one piloted by renown Lockheed Aircraft Corporation test pilot Tony Levier, back in 1938, when he used it to win the International Air Races at Oakland, CA.

General Pat Halloran Flying the Famous Race Plane, the “Firecracker” Click on above text to see his personally written story.

The renown British DeHavilland DH 88 Comet racer . . .

The General was an active member of the Riverside (CA) Flabob Airport’s EAA Chapter Number 1, the very first chapter in the EAAThe General has also flown the renown British DeHavilland DH 88 Comet racer, which can be seen above in its bright red racing colors.

We wish the General a speedy and full recovery!

1st Aero Airfield Security Chief, Bob Wright, Tests New Drone

FASF Airfield Security Chief, Bob Wright, of Columbus, Testing his latest model drone in high winds at FAS 1916 Airfield.

Yesterday, Saturday, June 24, 2017, Bob, who actually lives adjacent our our Airfield, made one of his multi-weekly trips over to the FAS Airfield East-West runway, to test out his new drone in high wind conditions.  Surprisingly, this new hi-resolution video surveillance drone, although very small and light-weight, managed to cope with the windy conditions without any difficulty.

Bob has already accumulated thousands of feet of video of both the Airfield and local Columbus area from previous flights.  He plans to edit some of the footage so that we can post the aerial views of the field and town sometime this Summer.

When we post these aerial views of the field and Village, one will be able to see precisely what the intrepid airman of the First Aero Squadron witnessed daily when they flew their JN-2,3, and 4 model Jennies on missions out of Columbus a century ago.  Keep an eye out on our site for these upcoming aerial views by Bob of our FAS Airfield.

As is true of so many of our members, Bob has had a colorful and diverse career, most of it involving Aviation.  After retiring from the U. S. Army, where he was a Supervisor of Aircraft Maintenance (of both Fixed and Rotary Winged Aircraft) in widely diverse parts of the world, including Korea and Germany as well as stateside, he also worked for Northrup-Grumman Aircraft Corporation on their advanced “J STARS” project in Louisiana.  Once he had re-located  to Columbus, Mr. Wright served as the Columbus Fire Chief for some 7 years, before making his final retirement.

In addition to his varied work career, Bob is also a long time motorcycle enthusiast as well as automotive restoration buff.  Here, below, are two photos of several of Bob’s proudest restorations, for which he’s garnered numerous car show awards.  On his large property near the FAS Airfield, Bob designed and erected a large hangar styled restoration facility, in which he does most of his automotive refurbishing activity.  Bob’s wife, Brigitte, is from Germany, although he didn’t meet her there during his years of extensive service in that NATO ally, but rather in the U.S.  Brigitte has a passion for growing her local food and raises chickens in a luxury Chicken house built for her by her husband.

One of Bob’s proudest restorations is this VW Camper Van, behind which is another prize restoration, his BMW motorcycle aboard its custom built show trailer.

Completely restored vintage air-cooled BMW motorcycle, a prize winning gem, at a local show.  Bob is in background. Remember, to see any photograph in full resolution, simply click on it.

717th Military Intelligence Battalion Visits FAS Airfield

The FASF experiences a first!

Every year, more than six large groups of senior level non-commissioned soldier students visit Columbus from Ft. Bliss’ Army Sergeant Majors Academy to study the 1916-17 Punitive Expedition’s battlefields and launching sites.

But this Sunday, something different transpired, when a completely new group of some 60 odd Army troops from San Antonio Texas’ Fort Sam Houston were guided around Columbus – and the FAS Airfield – by a young female Army Lt. Colonel, Brit Erslev, PhD (below) who commands their 717th Military Intelligence Battalion.  Their home base in San Antonio is affectionately called, “ALAMO STATION.

FASF member, John Read (L) explains exhibit layout to Col. Brit Erslev, PhD  (R). Note First Aero Jenny in background.

But why this new interest from a San Antonio, TX branch of the U.S. Army’s Intelligence & Security Command (“INSCOM“), which is itself headquartered in Virginia?

Because its commander is a long time student of U.S. Military History – and Columbus rates high in her list of important U. S. historical military sites.

After all, among other firsts, the attack on Columbus in 1916 triggered the 1st deployment of U. S. military heavier than aircraft in sustained combat, as well as the first use and application of mechanized military vehicles. As all good historians know so well, “If we ignore the failures in our history, we are bound to repeat them . . .”And, those Jenny airplanes, in particular, were also busily gathering intelligence for the Expedition’s Commanding General, “Black Jack” Pershing.

The publicly stated end-goal in the Punitive Expedition was to find and punish the Mexican rebel, Pancho Villa. But, while we failed to accomplish that objective before withdrawing from our Southern neighbor’s territory, as all close students of the First Aero Squadron know, we did learn – and prove – some other vital military lessons, notwithstanding the mission’s over all inability to achieve its main objective.

We discovered the critical need for dependable – and combat ready – military aircraft, which our beloved Jenny was definitely not, at least at the campaign’s outset. But, by the Expedition’s termination on February 7, 1917, only eleven months later, we had debugged and improved the rickety machine into an outstanding and even reliable military trainer.  That Jenny, finally perfected enough to go into mass production (over 8,000!), led to our new ability to train  almost 10,000 new Army and Navy aviators, who, when they went to fly in the skies over Europe, helped turn the tide of WWI towards the Allies’ favor.

Again, back in 1916, the Punitive Expedition was created by then President Woodrow Wilson for the stated purpose of capturing and punishing the infamous Mexican revolutionary, Pancho Villa, for having terrorized the small sleeping village in the early morning hours of March 9 of 1916. That attack had caught the town and its small Army Garrison completely by surprise and led to 18 American deaths, including some innocent local and visiting civilians.

Colonel Erslev had personally attended the FASF’s Presentation this past March 12th, where she had confirmed her understanding of the First Aero’s accomplishments – and of what its mission entailed.

Accordingly, Colonel Erslev gathered her troops into three large cross-country buses this past Sunday and transported them to Columbus for an important history lesson, one that directly relates to their Army Intelligence specialty.

 John Read, elicits chuckle from Colonel Brit when he observes that no one can allege that she’s an underachiever!

Good intelligence gathering often depends on either covert or overt Surveillance and Reconnaissance forays into enemy territory.  And that, of course, was the primary – and at least partially successful mission of the First Aero Squadron, as it deployed out of Columbus and into Mexico a century ago.  Interestingly, more than a century later, that mission is still the main thrust of today’s hi-tech First Aero Squadron, headquartered at Beale Air Force Base just North of Sacramento, CA.

The Intelligence Battalion from Ft. Sam Houston is led by this Army ROTC graduate from the nation’s second oldest (1693) University, William and Mary.  Among many world-wide assignments in her career, Lt. Colonel Erslev also served at the Army’s Military Academy, West Point. She is now poised to once again return to the famous military teaching facility, however this time as part of its full-time academic staff, as a resident Professor.

As a female intelligence specialist and Battalion Commander, she is not a typical Army officer, alone insofar as she has already managed to acquire her Doctorate in U. S. History.  With this level of interest in the nation’s past events, particularly its military history,  it isn’t difficult to understand Colonel Erslev’s fascination with the historic events that unfolded here in Columbus before and during the Punitive Expedition in 1916 and 1917.

Some of Colonel Erslev’s 60 odd  troops begin to gather on the PVSP Exhibit Hall’s Patio in readiness for their next Columbus area tour stop.

As many of you know, one of the first major advantages derived from the country’s fledgling Air Service was the capability to quickly gather and analyze rapidly changing battlefield events, the sort of  Intelligence never before obtained so quickly – – – and all the direct result of the Army’s new “eyes in the sky.”

Colonel Erslev carefully planned her field tour, or “Staff Ride,” as the experience is called in the military, by investigating the Staff Ride routine used by the Army’s Sergeant Major’s Academy at Ft. Bliss, in El Paso, TX, which, as mentioned, regularly visits Columbus to explore its rich military history.

Under the expert guidance of our own local (El Paso, TX) Punitive Expedition Historian, Dr. Robert Bouilly, the Sergeant Majors Academy developed a detailed Staff Ride itinerary for Columbus, one designed for the singular purpose of helping its students understand precisely what transpired here during the Punitive Expedition – and why those developments and experiences are so relevant in today’s modern Army.

John Read recalling a funny incident with one of the Sergeant Majors Academy’s recent Staff Ride visits to Columbus.

The Colonel’s men and women Intelligence Battalion members arrived in Columbus yesterday, dressed in casual civilian attire, so easily blended in with the other civilians about town. They spent over five hours visiting and studying the century old battleground, the town itself, and the old Fort site. They were carefully guided through our local Columbus Historical Society’s Museum and also the Pancho Villa State Park’s Exhibit Hall, where FASF member and Chief Park Ranger, John Read (above), made sure they they were all warmly welcomed.

The FASF would like to formally thank Colonel Erslev for attending our annual presentation last March and for bringing her soldiers this long distance just to visit Columbus and it’s numerous other surrounding historical sites – and for taking some FASF membership application forms with her.  We hope to have her join our ranks – – – and wish her and her Battalion the very best!

Colonel Bob Pitt, FASF, Awards Leadership Trophy at HAFB

Holloman AFB. Saturday, April 6, 2016

Students’ Wives handle Graduation Banquet Registration – Lt. Kendrick Talamantez at Left

Colonel Bob Pitt Describes History of Daedalian Leadership Award and of Flight 24 to Audience-Photo by A1C Alexis Docherty, USAF

                     Colonel Bob Pitt (L) Presents Daedalian Leadership Award to Captain Cole Wagner (R)


Airman 1st Class Alexis Docherty, Photographer, 49th Fighter Group, Captures a Happy Col. Pitt & Captain Wagner

Colonel Bob Pitt (above), USAF Ret., long time FASF member and former F-4 Fighter Pilot in Vietnam, bestowed the coveted Daedalian Flight 24 Leadership Award on Graduating Student, Captain Cole “DAK” Wagner, at Saturday evening’s Holloman Air Force Base’s 314th Fighter Squadron’s latest F-16 “VIPER” graduating class; “16-BBH.”

Flight of F-16s in Formation     Colonel Bob Pitt congratulates another awardee, Major “Snip” Moss, who won the Top Instructor Pilot Trophy.

STILL THE BEST FIGHTER IN THE WORLD?  (Above) – A short action video (2:28) of The “Middle-Aged” F-16 Viper vs. the latest (F-35) high tech fighter in the USAF inventory.  You will quickly understand why some 26 different nations are using this older lightweight jet as their first line fighter.

At Graduation Cocktail Party, Col. Bob Pitt (L) and his wife, Julie, Speak with Colonel Mario Campos, also a Daedalian from El Paso, TX

Lt. Col. Mike Driscoll, 311th Fighter Squadron Commander, poses with Col. Bob Pitt during the event.

Major “Snip” Moss (L) speaks with Daedalian, Colonel Mario Campos (R)

(L to R) Col. Bob Pitt, Ric Lambart, Major Mike Moss, and Col. Mario Campos

314th Fighter Squadron’s Class 16BBH Gathers for Group Photo, Courtesy of 49th Wing’s PAO, A1C Alexis Docherty

Opening Photo for Class 16-BBH Movie:  All 16 Graduating Students of Class atop F-16 Viper Wing


Ford Tri-Engine Plane 6

Tracy Miller takes photos of the Ford Tri-Motor as it taxis this past week at the Santa Teresa International Jetport. Photo Courtesy of Mark Lambie and the El Paso Times Newspaper. Ford Trimotor Captain Steve Lambrick waves from cockpit.

1928 Ford Trimotor Flies Frequently at EAA/WEAM event at Dona Ana Jetport

Some interesting facts about the Ford Trimotors:

This particular ship is powered by three P&W R-985 Wasp Junior engines of approx. 400HP each.  But the planes could and were equipped with many different engines of more or less horsepower.

Different models also had different cockpit and windshield designs – some were streamlined (slanted back) and some actually slanted forward (as does this model in which we rode this weekend), while others were simply vertical windshield panes. Some had engine cowls on their outboard or wing mounted engines, some even on the nose engine, and some even had fenders over their wheels, while some others had streamlined fairings over vertical wheel strut supports.

Some Tri-motors were seaplanes and others were fitted with skis for snow bound operations.

The ship was first designed by William Bushnell Stout to be single engined. But Stout sold out manufacturing rights to his aircraft to Henry and Edsel Ford.  His designs were originally inspired by the all-metal German aircraft designer, Hugo Junkers, and closely resembled the German’s Fokker F-VII Trimotor.

Junkers sued Ford when he tried to sell the planes in Europe – – – and he won, since the Ford too closely resembled the Junkers G-24. While the corrugated aluminum sheeting was very strong compared to the flat sheets coming into use, it was aerodynamically productive of far too much drag.   Ford sued Junkers a second time, and the court in Prague again declared that the Ford Trimotor had impinged on the Junkers’ patents.

Ford’s later AT-5 version had drop-down cargo containers in the bottom part of inner wing sections.  More than a dozen Ford Trimotors were purchased by the Army Air Corps in the early thirties with varied engine models from 200HP to 300HP.  Ford’s pilot, Henry J. Brooks died in a test flight, causing Ford to lose his enthusiasm for aviation investments.

The Douglas DC-2 and 3 quickly outperformed and outclassed the Trimotors.  But Ford lent great credibility to the fledgling American aviation industry, and, while not profiting from his Trimotor production, the brilliant entrepreneur did bring about many important infrastructure innovations such as: paved runways, passenger terminals, hangars, airmail and radio navigation.  By the late 1920’s the Ford Aircraft Division was reportedly the “largest manufacturer of commercial airplanes in the world.”

Before abandoning his aviation enterprise, Ford designed “every man’s” airplane, a single seat commuter plane called the Ford Flivver in 1927.

Meantime, a total of 199 Ford Trimotors were built between 1926 and 1933, including 79 of the 4-AT variant, and 116 of the 5-AT variant, plus some of an experimental variety that were never produced.  One of Latin America’s earliest airlines, Cubana de Aviación, was the first to use the Ford Trimotor in Latin America, starting in 1930, for its domestic services.

Ford Flivver at left

Ford Test Pilot, Harry Brooks, is piloting the Flivver.

Below are the two videos (Part I and II) shot and edited by Ric Lambart on the last day’s ops. The first video is 7:07 minutes long, less the end credits and the second (II) is 14 minutes long.

Below is a video made by long time FASF Member and one of our top Historical Consultants, John Read.  He and his wife, Elli, joined in the fun and excitement over the weekend as you can see. (4:12)

Below is a KRWG Video with FASF Member, Brett Hahn’s, 2015 description (2:54):

Ford Tri-Motor Foundation – Dedicated to Building the Legacy Airliner from Scratch! –  (8:38):


Kermie (Kermit) Weeks’ Hurricane Damaged TriMotor being rebuilt in Michigan – (30:23) (Excellent Views of Plane’s Skeletal Framwork):


Greg Herrick’s 1927 Ford Trimotor – Founder of Golden wings Museum –  (27:46):

MODELS (Variants):



Ford 3-AT

The original Stout prototype; one built. (Destroyed in suspicious fire)

Ford 4-AT

Pre-production prototype, powered by three 200-hp (150-kW) Wright J-4 Whirlwind radial piston engines, accommodation for two pilots and eight passengers; one built.

Ford 4-AT-A

The original production version, similar to the Ford 4-AT prototype; 14 built.

Ford 4-AT-B

Improved version, powered by three 220-hp (165-kW) Wright J-5 Whirlwind radial piston engines, accommodation for two pilots and 12 passengers; 39 built.

Ford 4-AT-C

Similar to the Ford 4-AT-B, equipped with a 400-hp (300-kW) Pratt & Whitney Wasp radial piston engine, fitted in the nose of the aircraft; one built.

Ford 4-AT-D

Three aircraft similar to the Ford 4-AT-B, each with different engines and minor modifications.

Ford 4-AT-E

Similar to the Ford 4-AT-B, powered by three 300-hp (225-kW) Wright J-6-9 Whirlwind nine-cylinder radial piston engines; 24 built.


Ford 4-AT-F

One aircraft similar to the Ford 4-AT-E.

Ford 5-AT-A

Enlarged version, powered by three 420-hp (320-kW) Pratt & Whitney Wasp radial piston engines, accommodation for two pilots and 13 passengers, the wingspan was increased by 3 ft 10 in (1.17 m); three built.

TAT Ford 5-AT-B flown by Lindbergh

Ford 5-AT-B

Similar to the Ford 5-AT-A, powered by 420-hp Pratt & Whitney Wasp C-1 or SC-1 radial piston engines, accommodation for two pilots and 15 passengers; 41 built.

Ford 5-AT-C

Improved version, similar to the Ford 5-AT-A, accommodation for two pilots and 17 passengers; 51 built.

Ford 5-AT-CS

Seaplane version, fitted with Edo floats; one built.

Ford 5-AT-D

Increased-weight version, powered by three 450-hp (340-kW) Pratt & Whitney Wasp SC radial piston engines. The wings were mounted 8 in (20 cm) higher, to increase cabin headroom, but otherwise similar to the Ford 5-AT-C; 20 built.

Ford 5-AT-DS

Seaplane version, fitted with Edo floats; one built.

Ford 5-AT-E

Proposed version, the engines were relocated to the wing leading edges.

Ford 6-AT-A

Similar to the Ford 5-AT-A, powered by three 300-hp Wright J-6-9 radial piston engines; three built.

Ford 6-AT-AS

Seaplane version, fitted with Edo floats; one built.

Ford 7-AT-A

Redesignation of a single Ford 6-AT-A, equipped with a 420-hp Pratt & Whitney Wasp radial piston engine, fitted in the nose of the aircraft.

Ford 8-AT

One Ford 5-AT-C converted into a single engine freight transport aircraft. Six different engines ranging from 575 hp (429 kW) to 700 hp (520 kW) were installed.[18]

Ford 9-AT

Redesignation of a single Ford 4-AT-B, fitted with three 300-hp Pratt & Whitney Wasp radial piston engines.

Ford 11-AT

Redesignation of a single Ford 4-AT-E, fitted with three 225-hp Packard DR-980 diesel engines.

Ford 13-A

Redesignation of a single Ford 5-AT-D, fitted with two 300-hp Wright J-6-9 Whirlwind radial piston engines, and a 575-hp (430-kW) Wright Cyclone radial piston engine fitted in the nose of the aircraft.

Ford 14-A

Large three-engined version, powered by three 1000-hp (750-kW) Hispano-Suiza 18 Sbr piston engines (W engines: 3 x 6 cylinders), accommodation for two pilots and 40 passengers.

Ford XB-906

One Ford 5-AT-D was converted into a three-engined bomber aircraft.

United States military designations


One 4-AT-A evaluated by the United States Army Air Corps, redesignated C-3 after evaluation.[19]


One 4-AT-A was redesignated from XC-3 following evaluation[19]


Model 4-AT-E a military transport version, powered by three 235-hp Wright R-790-3 Whirlwind radial piston engines; seven built, all later converted to C-9[19]


One 4-AT-B acquired by the military for evaluation[19]

A C-4A

C-4A replica


Military transport version, based on the Ford 5-AT-D, powered by three 450-hp Pratt & Whitney R-1340-11 Wasp piston engines; four built[19]


One C-4A re-engined with three 450-hp R-1340-7 engines.[19]


Redesignation of all seven C-3As fitted with 300-hp (224 Kw) Wright R-975-1 radial piston engines[20]


One Model 4-AT-A for evaluation by the United States Navy[21]


Military transport version for U.S. Marine Corps, based on the Ford 4-AT-E, but with three Wright J6-9 engines; two built, redesignated RR-2 in 1931[21]


Military transport version for the U.S. Navy (one) and U.S. Marine Corps (two), based on the Ford 5-AT-C; three built.[21]

Ford RR-1 at Langley Virginia 1934


Redesignation of the XJR-1 prototype[22]


Redesignation of the JR-2 in 1931[22]


Redesignation of the JR-3 in 1931[22]


Designation for one 5-AT-C[22]


Designation for two 4-AT-D, one each for the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marines[22]





This legendary Ford Trimotor, the first American built airliner to ever turn a profit for its operators, arrives today  at the War Eagles Air Museum (“WEAM”), Santa Teresa International Jet Port.  It’s being sponsored by WEAM and the locally based Experimental Aircraft Association (“EAA”) Chapter 1570.  Proceeds from the event go to help fund the chapter’s and Museum’s John and Betty MacGuire Youth Aviation Training Scholarship Fund, which finances flight training for young men and women between the ages of 16 and 22.  The MacGuires are the founders of both WEAM and the Jet Port itself. Rides may be booked in advance at the following prices:

Adults $70, Children up to 17 $50; and the walk up or no reservation prices are only five dollars more.  Rides are given today  beginning at 2:00 PM through 5:00 PM or Friday, Saturday and Sundays between 9:00 AM and 5 PM daily.

More information may be obtained by going to FLYTHEFORD.ORG and reservations are made by calling 1-877-952-5395.

Cross This Exiting Adventure Off Your Bucket List Today!

This airplane broke numerous records and set many new benchmarks of innovation in its heyday. It was the first American Designed and built airliner to make a profit for its operators and was an all metal airplane with uniquely corrugated aluminum sheeting over both its monocoque structured cantilever wings (without the usual strut bracing common in the era) as well as over its fuselage.  It had comfortable seats inside the attractively well furnished and commodious interior cabin, where passengers enjoyed the passing panorama below them through large picture-sized windows, unlike the comparatively small windows experienced in today’s modern jet liners.

The weather forecast for this weekend’s aviation experience is for sunny warm and breezy, or otherwise, for pleasant flying conditions.  A number of the EAA Chapter members are also active members of the FASF as is the War Eagles Museum, which, under the leadership of Bob Dockendorf,  has been an active business member since the FASF’s earliest days.

Above is another short (3:32) video of the TriMotor in action.

Below, is a very short (only about a minute 25 seconds in length) video reproduction of an old 1941 Newsreel taken of the TriMotor doing loops, as its famous aerobatic pilot, Harold Johnson, puts it through the sort of maneuvers otherwise the restricted domain of much smaller and specially designed stunt planes.  It was taken in Miami, Florida and was attended by the recently abdicated King of England, the Duke and and his American wife, the Duchess of Windsor, both of whom were special honored guests at the airshow.  We include this short clip just so you can believe the incredible stunts, including a “tail spin,” of which this large (for its day) airliner proved capable.  While the newsreel audio may leave a bit to be desired, the actual movie proved Captain Johnson’s exceptional skill, as well as the strength in the Ford ship’s overall design.