"Warplanes go to Arizona desert to die"

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by syscom3, Aug 23, 2014.

  1. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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  2. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Both an awesome and sad sight to see all those aircraft sitting there...
     
  3. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    There's also a story about a B-17 that had engine failure and landed on a small mesa around Kingman and was stranded there for years. Finally, someone replaced the engines and props and flew it off, gaining flying speed only after launching off the mesa. They had gotten a scrap title to the B-17 and took a chance and made it!

    I forget the exact situation, but I heard that story from at least 10 people up in the Kingman area while I was flying around Arizona for 10+ years.
     
  4. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    A friend of our family owned the B-17F that was tied down at Orange County Airport for years. He had purchased it for a ridiculously low price, as it was being sold for scrap at the time.

    Not sure what ever happened to it, but after he died of a stroke in the late 70's, it went away :(
     
  5. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    Would be interesting if you knew the registration number. Maybe it is still flying today!
     
  6. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    #6 GrauGeist, Aug 24, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2014
    I doubt it, Greg...it was in rough shape. It had been preparing to go overseas and on one of it's last training mission in the Gulf of Mexico, it was hit by friendly AA, damaging it's nose. So the nose had been faired over and it was used as a trainer, hack, transport and all sorts of things. It was OD overall, no noseart, nothing impressive. We never thought to take photos of any of the aircraft the guys had...I suppose I figured everybody and everything would be around forever. :(

    I rode in it twice (once I got to man-handle the controls from the right-seat) and I think the coolest sound on earth is the startup of the engines aboard a B-17.

    * by the way, in the 70's, no one was serious about preservation of warbirds. I used to fool around in the boneyard at Chino all the time and there were all sorts of warbird carcasses out there that are long gone, now *
     
  7. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I know there were carcasses everywhere. Don't you wish we had BOUGHT one and saved it until now?

    Hindsight is a good thing, but impractical. When my father was a doctor in the US Army in Europe, his first Sargeant was getting out of the Corps and wanted my dad to invest $500 in a company to make candy bars. Dad said no. The first Sargeant's first name was Peter and his brother was Paul and the candy bar was "Mounds."

    Dad kicked himself for YEARS afterwards, but big opportunity often knocks only once or less.
     
  8. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Greg, do me a favor and ask around there at Chino and ask if anyone remembers the Fw190 fuselage that used to sit near the fenceline to the west (past the hangars)along the road (near the old entrance). There were bunches of old movie props there and this was sitting amongst them. No wings, no canopy and it was (if memory serves right) kind of a sun baked grayish color...
     
  9. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    Will do.
     
  10. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    Good Lord, THE Mounds bar?

    I can still bloody remember the jingle!

    chewy chewy
    PeterPaulMounds
    chewy chewy
    doodle oop doop

    Why the hell I can remember I can remember that jingle, but not the name of the guy who lives three doors down, is beyond me.
     
  11. wuzak

    wuzak Well-Known Member

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    That is a symptom of Alzheimer's mhuxt!
     
  12. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    Heheheh, sounds right.
     
  13. A4K

    A4K Well-Known Member

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    What sounds right...? :confused:

    :)
     
  14. at6

    at6 Well-Known Member

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    #14 at6, Aug 26, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2014
  15. Balljoint

    Balljoint Member

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    I took a rather long an otherwise boring detour past China Lake a number of decades ago. Many acres of B-29s/B-50s.
     
  16. soulezoo

    soulezoo Active Member

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    As a kid in Sacramento CA, I lived near the Municipal Airfield (Executive Airport) and there was a Sky Park across the street with a hanger and some land filled with vintage aircraft and WWII fighters. The one that stood out most to me was a P-47. I stood in awe of that bird. The planes remained there until the owner died and they were sold off.

    As an aside, this is just down the street a little from the infamous site where a F-86 slammed into a filled ice cream parlor in the mid 70's. I was there.
     
  17. BiffF15

    BiffF15 Well-Known Member

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    Soulezoo,
    I just read about it, and it's one heck of a tragic story! I hope you didn't lose any friends or family.
    Cheers,
    Biff
     
  18. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    could you imagine riding a dune buggy out in the desert and coming across that??? i know they are long gone but a boy can dream cant he?
     
  19. soulezoo

    soulezoo Active Member

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    Thank you, and no one hurt in my family; we were lucky. We were just pulling into the parking lot as the plane hit.
     
  20. soulezoo

    soulezoo Active Member

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    I'll also mention that I've been through Davis-Monthan a number of times and have seen the boneyard. It's really quite sad; as I was a C-141 crew chief, it hurt to see all those 141's there. There is another that is similar for commercial aircraft near Barstow California.
     
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