p 47

“A P-47 Thunderbolt of the U.S. Army 12th Air Force flies low over the crumbled ruins of what once was Hitler’s retreat at Berchtesgaden, Germany, on May 26, 1945. Small and large bomb craters dot the grounds around the wreckage.”

(AP)

Airworthy P-47 Thunderbolts, 2017

A short guide to the survivors, and how to quickly identify them.

Balls Out, 44-32817, Lewis Air Legends

Red cowling, red cockpit frame, red bars on wingtips, horizontal stabilizers and fin; aircraft code G9-L.  This aircraft served in the Venezuelan Air Force from 1949, and eventually returned to the US in 1995.  She is based out of San Antonio, Texas.

Tarheel Hal, 44-90368, Lone Star Flight Museum

Orange fin and rear fuselage, invasion stripes on underside of rear fuselage and inner wings, distinctive orange/yellow/blue nose art, aircraft code IA-N; this paint scheme was worn by an identical aircraft of the 358th Fighter Group.  This aircraft was sold to the Venezuelan Air Force after WWII and returned in the 1990s for restoration.  She is based out of Galveston, Texas.

Wicked Wabbit, 44-90438, Tennessee Museum of Aviation

Red cowling ring, olive drab top fuselage, yellow bands on outer wing panels and fin, aircraft code 44; she wears the paint scheme of an identical aircraft of the 57th Fighter Group.  This aircraft was sold to the Yugoslav Air Force after the end of the war and returned to the US in 1986 for restoration.  She is based out of Sevierville, Tennessee, with her squadron mate

Hun Hunter XVI, 44-90460, Tennessee Museum of Aviation

Red cowling ring, olive drab top fuselage, yellow bands on the outer wings and fin, aircraft code 40; she wears the paint scheme of an identical aircraft of the 57th Fighter Group.  This aircraft was sold to Brazil in the 1950s and returned to the US in 1988 for restoration.  She is based out of Sevierville, Tennessee.

Hairless Joe, 44-90471, Erickson Aircraft Collection

Mottled grey-green fuselage and wings, invasion stripes on the lower rear fuselage and wings, red cowling ring, aircraft code LM-S; she wears the paint scheme of an identical aircraft of the 56th Fighter Group.  This aircraft was sold to the Peruvian Air Force and returned in to the US 1969.  She is based out of Madras, Oregon.

No Guts, No Glory, 45-49192, Claire Aviation Inc

Black-and-white checkerboard cowling, invasion stripes on the upper and lower wings and rear fuselage, black band on fin, aircraft code XM-X; she wears the colors of an identical aircraft of the 82nd Fighter Squadron.  This aircraft was sold to Peru and returned to the US in 1969 for restoration.  She is based out of Wilmington, Delaware.

Squirt VIII, 45-49205, Palm Springs Air Museum

Dark green fuselage, white cowling ring, white band on fin, invasion stripes on the lower wings and rear fuselage, aircraft code 2Z-P.  This aircraft was sold to the Peruvian Air Force and returned to the US in 1969 for restoration.  She is based out of Palm Springs, California.

45-49346, Yanks Air Museum

Unpainted except for national insignia and tail number, the Yanks Air Museum P-47D is one of few unpainted airworthy survivors.  She is based out of Chino, California, along with

42-27385, Yanks Air Museum

Unpainted except for national insignia and tail number, she is a rare prototype YP-47M.  The aircraft is based out of Chino, California.

45-49385, Westpac Restorations

Black-and-white checkerboard cowling, black band on fin, invasion stripes on lower wings and fuselage, aircraft codes WZ-A (port) and B-WZ (starboard).  The aircraft was sold to the Peruvian Air Force and returned to the US in 1969 for restoration.  She is based out of Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Tallahassee Lassie, 45-49406, Flying Heritage Collection

Blue cowling ring, blue cockpit frame, blue bands on horizontal stabilizers and fin, aircraft code 2Z-T; she wears the paint scheme of an identical aircraft of the 510th Fighter Squadron.  This aircraft was assigned to the ANG in 1948, removed from service soon after, and later restored.  She is based out of Everett, Washington.

Snafu, 42-25068, Comanche Warbirds Inc.

Razorback variant.  Dark green fuselage, black-and-white checkerboard cowling, invasion stripes on upper and lower wings and rear fuselage, white bands on horizontal stabilizers and fin, aircraft code WZ-D.  This aircraft entered civilian hands immediately following the end of WWII and has remained airworthy since.  She is operated out of Houston, Texas.

Spirit of Atlantic City, NJ, 42-25254, Planes of Fame Air Museum

Razorback variant.  Dark green fuselage, white cowling ring, white bands on horizontal stabilizers and fin, invasion stripes on rear fuselage and wings (may or may not be present), aircraft code UN-M.  This aircraft has been in civilian hands since 1944.  She is based out of Chino, California.

Lil Meatie’s Meat Chopper, 44-89136, Commemorative Air Force

Unfortunately the only picture of this plane I can find is disassembled in a hangar after a 2002 crash, so I don’t know if it still is airworthy or not.  Any information regarding this aircraft would be most welcome.

Several other Thunderbolts are under restoration to airworthiness, including the wreckage of Jackie’s Revenge which was lost in May 2016 with her pilot.  

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Planes named after planes:

Boeing C-17 Globemaster III -  Douglas C-124 Globemaster II

Beechcraft T-6 Texan II -  North American T-6 Texan

Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II - Republic P-47 Thunderbolt

Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II -  Lockheed P-38 Lightning

McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II -  McDonnell FH Phantom

[ bagel boy ] ✧ mark lee

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Mark Lee, 11:51 P.M

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