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A Reunion of Pilot and Airplane

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Take a bit of time and watch this film about one certain WW II P-51 Mustang (named "February"), the man who flew it (Jim Brooks), and their reunion something like 52 years after the war. There is a line in the film where a modern day Mustang pilot was talking about Jim Brooks. He looks in the camera and says something like, "They don't make guys like that anymore . . . they really don't."


I hope you enjoy it. It sure made me stop and reflect on those from WW II . . . and all they did in the name of freedom.





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Jim, a GREAT find. Thank you for sharing that with us, I was quite moved watching it.


The absolute greatest prop driven fighter plane ever built, hands down. Everytime I see one, I just find myself staring at every detail and nunace of it's construction and design in amazement.


Designed, built, and flown by the GREATEST generation of our lifetime, a generation of men and women who should never be forgotten for their efforts and self scarafice that made this country, and many other countries around the world great.


The French and British would be speaking German, and the word "Pacific" would be spelled "Pashifikku" or パシフィック、太平洋(たいへいよう)、東海(とうかい) nowadays if it wasn't for these men and women. :salute::salute:


This plane, on a subconscious level, is one of the reasons that I have loved the Mustang car so much.

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Great video! Thanks for sharing.


I was lucky enough to attend the Gathering of Eagles in Columbus, OH in 2007. In addition to the almost 100 flying P-51 Mustangs, Glacier Girl (the recovered from the ice P-38) was there, a couple of Aircobras, a British Lancaster, and a B-17 were there. The Air Force had their F-16 T-birds there also. It was quite an event. The cool part was that you could get up close and personal to everything there except the T-birds. I have tons of pics from the event.

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I broke down several times during my viewing......truthfully...all I could think of was my Grandfather who served with the Second Infantry (Indian Heads),

landed at Normandy and fought in the Battle of the Bulge.


We owe so much to that generation.....and they are all so humble..........


and I wear the patches proudly of all the servicemen in my family.....





I love you Papa!


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Just like others who have responded to this post, am not ashamed to say that I felt my eyes welling up with tears a few times as I watched this wonderful film. The P-51 has to be the most beautiful prop driven plane ever designed, and its performance even exceeds its beauty. To think they were designed in the 1940's using slide-rules, makes them even more amazing. I have always loved these planes, and am in awe of the pilots who flew them. These men literally gave their all, so that I and my children might never have to do what they did. I owe them (any all others who have served in the armed forces to protect our way of life) the deepest debt of gratitude and respect.


I once had lunch with the son of a pilot who flew P-51's in the war. One of the stories he recalled was his Dad talking about the tremendous amount of torque the planes would develop. He said that many new pilots would crash on take off because once the wheels broke free of the tarmac, the entire plane would start to rotate against the torque of the engine. It you weren't ready for it, it would catch you off guard.


My Dad was in the Air force During Korea, and was stationed at Nellis AFB. This was during the days of the Super Saber Jets. I don't recall him talking about the jets, but I do remember stories about when an 'old' Mustang would fly in. Even then, everyone would stop what they were doing and watch the Mustang as it landed. These planes are timeless.


Thank you for sharing this film.



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When I was a kid I would read everything I could get my hands on about the World War II air war, both Army Air Corp and Navy. I couldn't get enough of the stories about the air battles and the aircraft. It was this history that led me to enlist in the Air Force after high school at the age of 18. I stayed in for 20 years working on fighter aircraft. One of those planes is now a classic of the jet age, the F-4 Phantom II. Now at age 57 I look back and miss those days.


The Gray Eagles film is a wonderful story. I'm going to order the DVD.

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and worth reading!!!!



Many years ago, Al Capone virtually owned Chicago .. Capone wasn't famous for anything heroic. He was

notorious for enmeshing the windy city in everything from bootlegged booze and prostitution to murder.


Capone had a lawyer nicknamed "Easy Eddie." He was Capone's lawyer for a good reason. Eddie was very good!

In fact, Eddie's skill at legal maneuvering kept Big Al out of jail for a long time.


To show his appreciation, Capone paid him very well. Not only

was the money big, but also, Eddie got special dividends. For instance,

he and his family occupied a fenced-in mansion with live-in help and

all of the conveniences of the day. The estate was so large that it

filled an entire Chicago City block.


Eddie lived the high life of the Chicago mob and gave little

consideration to the atrocity that went on around him.


Eddie did have one soft spot, however. He had a son that he

loved dearly. Eddie saw to it that his young son had clothes, cars, and

a good education. Nothing was withheld. Price was no object.


And, despite his involvement with organized crime, Eddie even

tried to teach him right from wrong.. Eddie wanted his son to be a

better man than he was.


Yet, with all his wealth and influence, there were two things

he couldn't give his son; he couldn't pass on a good name or a good



One day, Easy Eddie reached a difficult decision. Easy Eddie

wanted to rectify wrongs he had done.


He decided he would go to the authorities and tell the truth

about Al; "Scarface " Capone, clean up his tarnished name,

and offer his son some semblance of integrity. To do this, he would

have to testify against The Mob, and he knew that the cost would be



So, he testified.

Within the year, Easy Eddie's life ended in a blaze of gunfire

on a lonely Chicago Street .


But in his eyes, he had given his son the greatest gift he had to offer, at the greatest price he could ever pay. Police removed from his pockets a rosary, a crucifix, a religious medallion, and a poem clipped from a magazine.


The poem read:


"The clock of life is wound but once, and no man has the power to tell just when the hands will stop...

At late or early hour..

Now is the only time you own...

Live, love, toil with a will...

Place no faith in time, for the clock may soon be still. ";




World War II produced many heroes. One such man was

Lieutenant Commander Butch O'Hare.


He was a fighter pilot assigned to the aircraft carrier Lexington in the

South Pacific.


One day his entire squadron was sent on a mission. After he

was airborne, he looked at his fuel gauge and realized that someone had forgotten to top off his fuel tank.


He would not have enough fuel to complete his mission and get

back to his ship.


His flight leader told him to return to the carrier.

Reluctantly, he dropped out of formation and headed back to the fleet.


As he was returning to the mother ship he saw something that

turned his blood cold: a squadron of Japanese aircraft was speeding its

way toward the American fleet.


The American fighters were gone on a sortie, and the fleet was

all but defenceless. He couldn't reach his squadron and bring them back

in time to save the fleet. Nor could he warn the fleet of the

approaching danger. There was only one thing to do. He must somehow

divert them from the fleet.


Laying aside all thoughts of personal safety, he dove into the

formation of Japanese planes. Wing-mounted 50 caliber's blazed as he

charged in, attacking one surprised enemy plane and then another. Butch

wove in and out of the now broken formation and fired at as many planes

as possible until all his ammunition was finally spent.


Undaunted, he continued the assault. He dove at the planes,

trying to clip a wing or tail in hopes of damaging as many enemy planes as possible and rendering them unfit to fly.


Finally, the exasperated Japanese squadron took off in another



Deeply relieved, Butch O'Hare and his tattered fighter limped

back to the carrier.


Upon arrival, he reported in and related the event surrounding

his return. The film from the gun-camera mounted on his plane told the

tale. It showed the extent of Butch's daring attempt to protect his



He had, in fact, destroyed five enemy aircraft.


This took place on February 20, 1942 , and for that action

Butch became the Navy's first Ace of W.W.II, and the first Naval

Aviator to win the Congressional Medal of Honour.


A year later Butch was killed in aerial combat at the age of

29. His home town would not allow the memory of this WW II hero to

fade, and today, O'Hare Airport in Chicago is

named in tribute to the courage of this great man.


So, the next time you find yourself at O'Hare

International, give some thought to visiting Butch's memorial

displaying his statue and his Medal of Honour. It's located between

Terminals 1 and 2.





Butch O'Hare was "Easy Eddie's" son.


(Pretty cool, huh?)

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