Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Fathers and Sons and the FJ-3.

In response to David's last blog , here a tiny "rest of the story" on the special aircraft pictured above. Now I recall most of these FJ-3 fighter jets painted in a deep Navy Blue, and indeed they were primarily an aircraft carrier version of the land-based F-86. Both versions won acclaim during the Korean Conflict for their many successes against the Mig 15s and 17s. The guides at the Evergreen Aviation Museum pointed out, however, that the difference was because of the superiority of the well-trained and experienced American pilots against ill prepared Chinese rookies.

The airplane entered my life because of my Dad. Let me pause here to honor him for a long career with North American Aviation as a tool design engineer working on their products from the P-51 prop driven fighter (1940s) through many famous and important airplanes and all the way up to the Saturn V rocket and even a bit of the Shuttle. In the early 1950s we moved from California to Columbus, Ohio, where my dad was involved in producing the FJ-3 as a leading fighter of the day. I spent a lot of time out at the airport next to the plant and much of my interest in flying comes from that era and the frequent static air shows where I used my brownie box camera.

Thanks for the memories, Dad. Thanks for the memories, David. It's nice to be between your blessings, and it's nice that we share these common interests.


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