|VWC Swordfish airborne for EAA’s naval extravaganza|
|Written by David Siddall|
|Tuesday, 30 August 2011 12:46|
Naval Aviation was the dominant theme at the Experimental Aircraft Association’s (EAA) AirVenture 2011 at Oshkosh, Wisconsin, USA, from July 25 to 31, with the 100th anniversary of US naval aviation and the 70th anniversary of the sinking of the Bismarck being commemorated.
Vintage Wings of Canada (VWC) Fairey Swordfish Mk II HS554/C-GEVS, which had made its first flight on July 26 at Gatineau Airport, Ontario, following a five-year overhaul, arrived at Oshkosh to great acclaim on July 29. Sadly, 91-year-old Toronto resident Cdr Terry Goddard DSC CD, who was scheduled to speak in one of the EAA’s “Warbirds in Review” forums about his experiences as an Ark Royal-based Swordfish pilot during the Bismarck attacks in May 1941, was unable to travel to Wisconsin owing to soaring temperatures in the Midwest.
Among the historic US Navy aircraft at the show were two rarities from the Commemorative Air Force, Curtiss Helldiver NX92879 and Douglas Dauntless N82GA, plus three Vought Corsairs and four Grumman Wildcats. However, the EAA’s Naval Air Centennial Special Recognition Award went to Bob Coolbaugh’s New Market, Virginia-based 1911 Curtiss Model D reproduction, NX44V (see News, December 2010 Aeroplane).
The EAA also paid tribute to legendary fighter/test/display pilot R. A. “Bob” Hoover with a four-aircraft formation of types in which he thrilled air show crowds from the 1950s to the early 1990s.This is just a taster — see October’s Aeroplane magazine for the full story.