Taking off in the P-51 Mustang “Bunny” from the Palm Springs Air Museum. On the way to do flyovers in honor of Tuskegee Airmen Lt. Col. Bob Friend, special guest in the President’s Day Parade at the Riverside County Fair in Indio California. Pilot Tom Nightingale. Always something going on at the Palm Springs Air Museum! More photos and video coming this way shortly!
Off in the distance you see them, a P-40 Warhawk and a P-51 Mustang closing fast. No, not an old photo I found, but this last Saturday in the sky at the Palm Springs Air Museum.
A celebration of the Tuskegee Airmen of World War II and the 96th birthday of Lt. Col. Bob Friend, the oldest living Tuskegee pilot, having flown 140 combat missions over Europe. This is the Colonel sharing his times with some of the many visitors to the Air Museum. Tom Nightingale, the pilot flying the P-40 and often flying partner with the Colonel says that he remembers names and times and places of almost every photo that people can bring up to him. And that the Colonel can go hours on end, over and over talking to people, doing photographs and signing autographs.
The P-51 here is an airplane that has been restored in commemoration to the Colonel’s P-51, nicknamed “Bunny”, that he flew over Europe during the war. But this Saturday “Bunny” had another very special guest, Tuskegee Airman Rusty Burns! At 90 years old I can personally say this man got in and out of that airplane like a 25 year old. Even after a number of high speed passes down the runway, he was all smiles as he left the airplane off the front of the wing, not the closer to the ground back of the wing. Just like he said he always did!
Video photographed on FujiFilm X-Series Cameras and Lenses
One of only three World War II Japanese Zero’s still flying in the entire world. This Zero, owned and operated by the Commemorative Air Force, was delivered to the Imperial Japanese Navy Air Group #3. It originally had an air cooled rotary engine producing 1,130 hp and a top speed of 388 mph at almost 20,000 feet. In the flight demonstration you could easily see it’s nimble and powerful maneuverability.
The Aichi D3A Dive Bomber, nicknamed “Val”, was the aircraft carrier borne airplane that flew in almost all actions, including Pearl Harbor to the end of World War II. It was responsible for sinking more Allied warships than any other aircraft. This replica flying out of the Palm Springs Air Museum was flown in both the movies “Tora! Tora! Tora!” and “Pearl Harbor”.