Aero Club Members to hear
About Commemorative Air Force
††††††††† The history of the Commemorative Air Force (CAF)† will be the topic of a presentation† at the Sun Lakes Aero Club (SLAC)† meeting Monday, March 19 at the Sun Lakes Country Club .† The meeting begins with coffee and camaraderie at 6:30 p.m., followed by the presentation at 7 p.m. The public is invited to attend.
††††††††† Guest presenter will be Larry Turner, commander of the Arizona Wing of the CAF based at Falcon Field in Mesa.
††††††††† The CAF was organized in 1961 with the purpose of restoring and preserving World War II-era aircraft to flyable condition.† Today, the organization, based at Midland, Texas, has a fleet of more than 150 aircraft representing more than 60 different types, including planes from several foreign countries and other military conflicts since WWII.†† Turner says the organization ranks as the 5th largest air force in the world based on flyable aircraft.
The organizationís name was changed from the Confederate Air Force to the Commemorative Air Force by a vote of the members in 2002.
††††††††† Organized in 1978 at Falcon Field, the Arizona Wing of the CAF now has on display many WWII artifacts, memorabilia, and more than 20 aircraft, most in flyable condition.†† Most famous of the fleet is the B-17 Flying Fortress named Sentimental Journey, restored to flying condition by hundreds of CAF volunteers.† By 1986, the aircraft was making more than 60 appearances throughout the U.S. and Canada
The B-17 Sentimental Journey is maintained and flown by the Arizona Wing of the Commemorative Air Force (CAF).† CAF spokesman Larry Turner will review how the aircraft was obtained and restored to flying condition during a presentation to the Sun Lakes Aero Club Monday, March 19 at the Sun Lakes Country Club.
Turner also will discuss the history of Falcon Field, which opened in September, 1941 as a British Flying Training School.† More than 2,500 British pilots trained there in P-17 and AT-6 aircraft.††
Now in its 16th year, SLAC meets the third Monday of each month from October through May at the Sun Lakes Country Club Mirror Room.† More information on the club is available from Bob Walch, 480-895-8869 or Gary Vacin 480 802 2225.