1948 vs. 2009…

For those who like aviation!

That just sends a chill down the spine… And for 90, he sure is spry, and I have no doubt he could start that F-8 up and fly it today, no questions asked…

HERE is the official history of the Blues. And the new kids, the Thunderchickens, HERE, if anybody cares… 😉


Blues… — 16 Comments

  1. Wonderful film and my smile muscles were pushed way past their usual limits.

    There is something special when you hear that large round engine sound.

  2. Oh, he’d already worked the pre-flight checklist, and you can see that moment when he thinks about sliding that canopy shut and going. Then he kind of relaxes and says “You know it…It’s a long time ago.” Awesome film.

  3. I got to watch a gent do that with the rear turret of a Dauntless. The years vanished once he got onto the fuselage. From then on, he was 18 and an expert. The really fun part was when one of the Tora Tora planes went past, and he started tracking it with the gun. Didn’t even think, just saw and reacted.

    His son was flabbergasted. The son had never thought to ask dad about the War.

  4. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhghhhhhhhhh.
    THANK YOU for this!

  5. All of a sudden, when he was sitting in that cockpit, it got very dusty around here…

  6. John- Yes there is!

    Tole- You noticed… 🙂

    TXRed- Old habits die hard, especially when your life was on the line!

    LL- Yep!

    Sam- You’re welcome!

    Suz- That it did!

    Gerry- Neat, thanks!

  7. At the end of the video, while sitting in the cockpit, you could tell he was reliving, in his mind’s eye, experiences of air performances. BZ, Sir.

  8. ADM Dan Gallery tells a tale about a P5M and the Blue’s flight in F8F Bearcats meeting between layers out on the west coast. Blues’ lead rolls his flight inverted and the guest pilot flying the P5 thinks he is the inverted one and starts trying to roll the P5 upright. ADM Gallery tells it a lot better than I do.

    On another note, my step-dad finished Primary at Pensacola in SNJs and went straight to Advanced at Cabiniss Field, Corpus Christi, flying the F8F Bearcat. I can’t imagine strapping that beast on with so little time and no back seat for an instructor.

  9. We live in metro Chicago, and each Summer I cock my ear for the sound of radial engines on their way to Oshkosh. (They often overnight at Palatine.) Born in the 50’s and raised by the generation that knew no equal, that sound sends me running out back, looking to see what just might be passing over in my small patch of suburban blue sky. Though I’ve seen lots of things overhead, my favorite was the flight of B-17’s. I knew what I was hearing was a “heavy” and I had my fingers crossed and ran out the back door. Fabulous sound and a great sight

    Heh … My wife thought I was crazy. Though she humors me. Her first husband — now passed — flew as a Flying Midshipman. He landed, blind on the Princeton after taking flak over Korea. So, she understood.

  10. Great aircraft! Cream of the round-engine Navy fighters and the one I’d most like to fly.
    As a youngster I remember seeing Mira Slovak put on a great show in one. A privilege.
    All that said; for sheer auditory thrills nothing beats the Packard/Merlin in a -51

  11. ONFO: thank you for that!

    [email protected]: Sitting at a traffic light in Rockford. IL on an ordinary work day years ago; I about climbed out the car window to scan the sky after hearing that unmistakable Merlin sound. No idea who it was and I hadn’t known of any 51s living there. What a thrill.

  12. I used to enjoy seeing them parked on the runway at Grosse Isle Naval Air Station (when it existed) when I was a kid.
    Great video.