Hobbyist Forums banner
1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,454 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sorry for the OT, but some might appreciate the news.

It's a sad day in southeast Michigan for many as the WWII era hanger, home for the Yankee Air Force, burned to the ground saturday October 9th.

The main thing is, apparently no one was hurt or killed.

Three flyable aircraft were saved, the B-17 Yankee Lady, the B-25 Yankee Warrior, and the C-47 Yankee Doodle Dandy.

From what I understand, the last plane, the C-47, was being pushed out by several brave people as the rafters above their heads were catching fire.

Planes lost were a OV-10, F-105, C-60, and a wooden glider. Not to mention everything else that goes along with a WWII aviation museum, uniforms, books, newspaper clippings, WWII artifacts, etc....

The Yankee Air Museum of course, also had a fairly decent model display. I know a few guys personally who lost some of their model aircraft.

Its sad that history, real history, is lost. A lot of WWII vets who frequent the hanger, hanging out, telling war stories and giving tour to kids, have lost a real part of their past.

I've been a member there for about 10 years, went out as soon as I heard only to find the hanger reduced to small piles of fire. Members found each other along the side of the road and started to talk to each other. It was an eerie image to see our B-52 (outdoor static display) and rescued B-25, backlit by the fire, orange glints on each planes bodies.

If you have a museum like this close to you, don't take it for granted, because someday it might not be there.

There is already plans to rebuild, and I hope to be deeply involved in rebuilding the model display. Someday soon, I may come back and appeal for a donation or two.

Thanks for listening guys.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,879 Posts
That is sad news indeed, sorry to hear of this. :(

I hope the re build goes well and soon!
 

·
Oxidation Genius
Joined
·
31,342 Posts
DAMMIT! We can't affors to lose any warbirds like that. :(

I think they saved the most precious ones, though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,791 Posts
I travel all up and down the west coast going to air museums whenever I get the chance. From Chino to Seattle. I am a member of most of them.

I remember years back, one of the two giant blimp hangars left over from WWII that are located in Tillamook, Oregon, caught fire and burned to the ground.

One hangar houses the Tillamook Air Museum. It did not burn, and survives to this day. The other, which was used for storing hay and alfalfa, caught fire mysteriously and burned to the ground.

It is still strange, when on our occasional "air museum tour" to see just one of the giant blimp hangars standing. All that remains of the second hangar are the giant concrete pillars at the corners that were used to support the large hangar doors on either end.

Good luck on the rebuild of the Yankee hangar. It's always very sad to lose such an historic structure.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,640 Posts
Thats really too bad to hear we have lost more of our history. It's too bad we also lose so many of the few remaining WWII heros we have every day.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,259 Posts
Of course, any planes lost will be missed, but can you put it in perspective for me with how rare preserved or restored versions of the planes that were lost are?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
48 Posts
Response to Richard:

Of the lost planes listed, I belive the C-60 Lodestar is the rareest. A true WWII transport plane. Kinda looks like a DC-3 with a B24 tail arrangement - I've read there are only about 20 left or only 20 that can fly or something like that.

Why were the F-105 Thuderchief (sleek jet with BIG engine - all airplaine modelers have at least one) and the OV-10 Bronco (twin turboprop/twin tail bird of the VietNam era) in the WWII hangar? Just curious.

-PJ
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
128 Posts
If you go to their website, you will see that they have a large collection of post WW2 aircraft on display outside the museum, so thankfully they were not endangered.
Though the C-60 is rare, there are others in the world. As I read it, the OV-10 was actually the Bronco prototype, so it has additional rarity, as does the Waco CG-4 transport glider, though I am unsure whether that was a replica? I understand that the lost airframes were undergoing restoration inside the hangar so were probably inpieces or otherwise immovable.

I have been involved in the air museum business as a hobby and doing wreck recoveries for the past 25 years, so I know exactly what sort of heartache the museum members will be feeling right now.

Our museum in Adelaide, South Australia is currently restoring a genuine combat veteran P-38H Lightning recovered from New Guinea a few years back. Though static, she will be the pride of the place once completed.

My sympathies and best wishes to the YAF members.

Tony Densley
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,454 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for the support guys.

My, IPMS Livonia and the close IPMS Warren had a joint meeting the other night and we talked about initial ideas for a new model display.
 

·
Oxidation Genius
Joined
·
31,342 Posts
There's a picture of Yankee Lady taking flight in Flight Journal's special B-17 edition, currently on the magazine racks. She sure is purdy. Sure glad she's okay.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top