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Looking for ex-Bearcat pilots to interview

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Looking for ex-Bearcat pilots to interview

Old 2nd Dec 2009, 00:23
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Looking for ex-Bearcat pilots to interview

I'm doing a piece for Aviation History Magazine on the Grumman F8F and am looking for people with seat time in the airplane to interview, whether in a current warbird or way-back-then experience.

Anybody out there?

Not that this has anything to do with the above question, but I was amused awhile ago to be watching a film that was, at its release, maybe 1943, a major Hollywood epic for the time. Something about Wake Island, as I remember, Hollywood soldiers in those 1930s dishpan helmets.

What amused me was that one of the lead actors had a line in which he said something like, "Yes, if it hadn't been for those Grew-mun fighters, we'd have been in trouble." In 1942-'43, people didn't even know how to pronounce the company's name, today every man-in-the-street knows how to say it, if only for the Gulfstream...
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Old 2nd Dec 2009, 08:11
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Contact The Fighter Collection at Duxford. Owner Stephen Gray has more than a few Bearcat hours.
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Old 2nd Dec 2009, 12:49
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Stephen Grey also wrote a good article in Pilot some years ago - if you contact the Friends of The Fighter Collection, it may well have first appeared in TFC's Fighter Log.

I can recall him saying he was rather behind the aircraft after his first takeoff such was the difference from the P-51...

Other TFC Bearcat pilots over here included Paul Bonhomme, Pete Kynsey and Carl Schofield; also Eric Brown evaluated the type for the Royal Navy in the late 1940s if I remember aright. No doubt you already know of Steve Hinton adn Howard Pardue in the USA?
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Old 2nd Dec 2009, 14:43
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You could try contacting John Deakin through Avweb:
Pelican's Perch #39:<br>Bearcat!

(the article is interesting reading on its own by the way).
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