Great Planes on the Plains!
Sometimes, you just have a sense of it. You're in the presence of something historically significant. You know that something once great, is now great once gain. History and time have not been kind to some of the legendary and historic aircraft this great nation produced. As examples made their way to scrap heaps and reclamation of precious metals, their number dwindled. These remaining types have been restored and serve as tributes to the more famous examples lest time forget! So, they have been rekindled and fly to preserve the history. It mattered little to me that they've been patched, replaced, replaced and show some signs of wear and tear. Its bene some seventy years now and it is a small wonder to actually see them. Many thanks to all who served, served, and to those who now maintain and fly these craft.
B-17s once roared in the sky during WWII and many of our youngest men dared to fly them to victory, but not without much sacrifice. On this day, we arrived early and were greeted with an invitation to go on out and photograph this mighty survivor. We had a complete tour of the interior and exterior. And what a fine restoration it was. Later, an elderly gentleman, accompanied by his son, toured the aircraft. He pointed out a few things to me. As we approached the exit, it seemed, for a single moment, that this man was reliving a past long gone. Despite his age, he reflexively reached up and thrust himself out of the airplane (legs first, as we've seen in many WWII movies) just as the 18-year old he was during WWII would have!. The photo herein captures this man, probably caught up in reflective thought and most likely unawares of his momentary burst of strength and energy for that split second!
"In fullest appreciation" I thank the many men and women, legions in number and strong in heart, who have defended this nation as we approach this coming Independence Day celebrations!
Sadly, the B-17, Liberty Belle, (pictured here) was recently destroyed by fire after an emergency landing in an Illinois cornfield. (See Story) June 13, 2011 —The B-17 Liberty Belle owned by the Liberty Foundation was forced to make an emergency landing in a field southeast of the Aurora, Illinois, Municipal Airport Monday morning at around 9:30 CDT when an in-flight fire occurred shortly after take-off. All seven people on-board the non-revenue flight escaped the aircraft, but the airplane was destroyed when it became engulfed in flames. One person on the plane was treated for a minor head wound at Rush-Copley Medical Center in Aurora and released. Photos in this gallery among the last of this valiant restoration and operating museum piece. Original (full) resolution are available; contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Photography is art more than science or technology. The studied craft is best when used to illustrate a subject in an informative way. This page is made as a part of a life long interest in things aviation and time spent in the service. The "Great Planes on the Plains" page illustrates some of aviation's most storied visitors to the midwest as well as some residents. These aircraft are part of our past or present and serve or have served some important roles in our history. The contributions to our history as a nation is often profound. Exhibitors please note: nothing in this effort to portray these craft is about economic exploitation. The display of images herein is "a fair use" of any object with protected rights and is not an offer to sell or license commercially; images are presented as editorial. I make no trade (non enim merces) in this page.
Great photos are made, not merely taken, as the masters have told us. Viewers are encouraged to get out and about to see these aircraft and to explore the practice of photography. Best wishes, keep 'em flying!