Ops Part I: Early Secret Military Cold War Arctic Operations
During WWII several less publicized combat
events occurred that directly and heavily influenced post-WWII U.S.
military strategy as political relations deteriorated between the U.S. and
the Soviet hierarchy - this shadow conflict is historically identified as
"the Cold War." They included WWII arctic aerial reconnaissance,
remotely situated and manned weather-radio stations, U-boat operations,
secret German arctic military installations - historical events that, in
combination, obliquely and directly influenced classified U.S. postwar
military operations in the Polar Regions. Many such operations were
initiated from within the Territory of Alaska or Canada, from the
airparticipation as a UK/USA Agreement partner.
On April 9, 1940, German
troops invaded Denmark forcing King Christian X to order his people to
capitulate: orders were relayed by radio to independent thinking Governor
Eske Brun of Greenland (Kalaallit Nuinaat), the largest island (1,659
miles long and 840,000 square miles) in the Arctic hemisphere and a Danish
Commonwealth territory. Brun, deciding that Greenland must remain free of
German occupation, immediately contacted Washington, D.C., seeking
American food, military supplies and protection through the Danish
Minister still based in Washington, D.C.
Administration immediately dispatched U.S. Counsel James K. Penfield and
Vice Counsel George L. West aboard USCG Cutter
Comanche, landing them at Godthaaab - the seat
of Greenland’s Government Controller. Meanwhile,
Brun created a 15-man (increased to 26 men) Greenlander army called the
Sledge Patrol, equipped with dog sled teams and hunting rifles to patrol
Greenland’s east coast. They consisted of two groups - one based at the
comfortable house at Eskimoness in N.E. Greenland, and one at Scoresby
U.S. Convoy Task Force 8, under secret and "sealed orders," sailed for
Western Greenland commanded by USAAC Col. Bernt Balchen, the famous arctic
explorer, navigator and pilot. Sites previously scouted by the U.S. Coast
Guard were occupied and construction of two main USAAC bases was
initiated; Narsaarsuaq (code-name Bluie West-One) south of the Arctic
Circle, inside Julianehaab Fjord, another
north of the Arctic Circle inside the David Strait at Sondre Stromfjord
(code-name Bluie West-Eight) and
one at Katek-Angmagsslik (code-name Bluie-East Two), plus unidentified seaplane sites . . .
Flying into Yesterday: My Search for the Curtiss-Wright Aeronautical
In February 1943, the
Curtiss-Wright Airplane Company, then America’s largest aircraft
manufacturer, began training and employing women in aeronautical
engineering. These "Sisters of Icarus," 918 women who were chosen to
stay firmly on the ground perfecting planes while their brothers flew into
combat (and all too frequently went down in flames), were known as the
Curtiss-Wright Engineering Cadettes. My mother, Ricki Cruse Lenthe, was
one of them.
This story is my attempt to
assemble a clearer picture about her life as a Cadette, the lifelong
friends she made during that time, and the door that opened during WWII,
if only briefly, for women to co-create the shape of aviation. After a
diligent search for historical documents, three dozen interviews with
surviving Cadettes and Curtiss-Wright male employees, and hours of
discussion with some of my mother’s closest Cadette friends, I know that
what these female engineers accomplished "” in the universities and in
the airplane plants "” contained the seeds of a bona fide revolution. In
an amazingly short period of time (February 1943 through August 1945),
they proved the capability of women in a field that had previously been
labeled male-only territory. They also bailed out a company whose planes
were vital to winning WWII. Without them, the war would have dragged on
Cadette engineers labored
six days a week in five different Curtiss-Wright plants, as well as in the
company’s research lab in Buffalo, New York. But at the end of the war,
company management treated their vital contributions as a mere wartime
aberration. Forgotten were all the promises of promoting the Cadettes and
helping them upgrade to full "graduate engineer" status "when the
peace for which we are all fighting is won." But the Cadettes knew their
value. If they hadn’t been forced to by law and company pressure, a
great many of them would not have gone home after the war.
Like the skewed or
minimized record of other thwarted revolutions (usually demoted to "revolts"
by the writers of history), the pages describing the Cadette Program in
detail were cut from Curtiss-Wright’s WWII record with such a
razor-sharp edge that you almost can’t tell they were ever there. This
aviation mega-company that the Cadettes helped salvage from its own
engineering deficiencies in a time of national crisis retained no
documentation of their impressive achievements. In fact, corporate memory
of the Cadettes is now so well excised that a few years ago an employee at
Curtiss-Wright corporate headquarters responded to an inquiry about the
Cadettes with indignation: "We don’t know who in the world you’re
talking about. It’s certainly not our Curtiss-Wright."
The military’s "fog of amnesia" is almost as dense. Neither the Navy
nor the Army remembers approving the training initially; nor do they
recall that inspectors of naval aircraft (INAs) in the Columbus plant
signed off on the work of Cadettes who had competently inspected both sub-
and final airframe assemblies. You will certainly never see references to
the Cadette Program in WWII history books. Only the women themselves and
the universities that trained them retained any written documentation on
the Cadette Program.
Forty years after Orville
and Wilbur first took to the air in the Wright Flyer 1, there was a
blizzard in progress in West Lafayette, Ind., with almost six inches of
snow already on the ground. It was February 12, 1943, and 98 young women
were arriving by train from schools all over the South, the Midwest, the
Northeast, and Appalachia. They had each completed at least a year of
college and were ranked in the top third of their math classes and the top
half in everything else. Somewhere . . .
The Fly Leaf, Nov.-Dec. 1943
The Fokker F-32: The First Wide-Body Airliner
1929 found a number
of early airlines with a need for increased capacity on certain routes.
Along the eastern seaboard of the United States, Universal Aviation Corp.’s
New York City to Washington, D.C., had capacity issues. On the west coast,
Western Air Express (WAE) was dealing with the same issue on its route
between San Francisco and Los Angeles. Both were operating Fokker F.10As
with Universal also having Fokker Super Universals and Fairchild 71s. All
of these planes and their contemporaries had seating capacities of six to
14 passengers (see chart). The highest seating capacity aircraft in early
1929 carried only 15 passengers. The only alternatives offering increased
capacities were the Sikorsky and Consolidated flying boats, which for
these specific routes did
not really fit the requirements. Literature also indicates that Fokker
had some hope of marketing the aircraft to wealthy private owners as "roomy
and luxurious air-yachts."
Fokker, recognizing that there was a potential market for
a larger aircraft and spurred on by Universal’s and Western’s
encouragement, set about developing what was anticipated to be a much
larger and hopefully more economical design to fulfill this need. What
evolved was an enlarged F.10A that essentially doubled the carrying
capacity of the day. Not unlike what the 747 did with its introduction,
becoming the first modern wide-body aircraft, the F-32 was heralded as "game
changer." The parallels between the two aircraft are quite similar. The
Fokker F-32 was the first American aircraft with twin seating on both
sides of a center aisle. The 747 was the first to introduce a seating
arrangement arranged around two aisles. The F-32 was the first commercial
aircraft to provide a functioning galley for the preparation of hot meals.
It was the first to offer two passenger lavatories. It was the first four-engined
commercial aircraft operated in the United States.
Fokker Super Universal
Fokker believed that the F-32 would provide economies
of scale that would put it in high demand. For example,
its purchase price was 37 percent less per passenger than its
own popular Fokker F.10A Trimotor. The larger machine also required less engine power per passenger than comparable
three-engined aircraft.2 These economic
considerations were thought to solidify demand for the F-32, in spite of a
price tag of $110,000 per aircraft – a price that made it the most expensive
. . .
Fokker F-32 NC124M in flight
North Star Rising;
Part 1: Colonel Lewis Hotchkiss Brittin
The engine of a black biwing
Stinson Detroiter inaugurating the first passenger service for Northwest
Airways came to life at noon on July 5, 1927, at an old converted race
track known as the Speedway on the southern end of Minneapolis-St. Paul,
Minn., that later was renamed Wold Chamberlain Field in honor and memory
of Ernest Groves Wold (1897-1918) and Cyrus Foss Chamberlain (1896-1918)
who were both killed in WWI. The first ticketed passenger was a
28-year-old salesman from St. Paul named Bryon G. Webster. The guest
initially invited to accompany the pilot, Charles "Speed" Holman, was
the mayor of St. Paul, Laurence Curran Hodgson, who had previously been a
newspaper reporter for the Minneapolis Times and the St. Paul
Post Dispatch. The mayor was unable to make the journey and thus the
honor fell to Mr. Webster. Incidentally, Holman, previously known as "Slim,"
did not get the nickname "Speed" from his aviation exploits but from
racing motorcycles at break neck speeds at various venues like the
Minnesota State Fair Grounds.
The then 28-year-old Holman was well known in
aviation circles as a barnstormer, wing walker, parachute jumper, holder
of two transcontinental race records, stunt man, outside loop holder who
held the record for consecutive loops, mail pilot, and holder of the
American commercial air line speed record. Holman had been turned down by
the Army after being diagnosed "too deaf to ever become an aviator," a
fact that did not deter him from pursuing his objective. He learned to fly
from veteran commercial aviator, Walter Bullock, who would become one of
Northwest’s premier pilots.
Holman and Webster settled into the closed
cockpit aircraft built for passenger service and with the engine running
smoothly these two adventurers embarked on a historic 400-mile flight
crossing the upper Mississippi River then southeastward through Wisconsin
with the ultimate destination of Chicago. The authorization for Webster to
fly on the first flight was issued by one of the founders of the company
and then vice president and general manager, Lewis Hotchkiss Brittin.
Described as having "a tall scholarly appearance - heightened by a pair
of rimless granny glasses and a gray Homburg perched squarely atop his
head" - was only the outward countenance of a man with a great drive and
zeal to place the Twin Cities on what was becoming an ever enlarging
airmail and potentially expansive passenger route system. The trip almost
ended in disaster when the engine quit near the Wisconsin stateline
forcing Holman to make an emergency . . .
Lewis H. Brittin
The Robert G.
Hufford Photographic Negative Collection
When the American Aviation
Historical Society was formed in 1956, many of the founding members were
active aviation photographers. They were part of a widely dispersed
fraternity of young men who ventured out to photograph friendly airfields
with their 616 or Argus C-3 cameras to capture the unusual and interesting
aircraft they found on film. Their inspirations were the professional
photographers such as Howard Levy and Gordon Williams, whose work they had
followed in aviation magazines. But they were mostly amateurs who
processed their own negatives and prints to save money. They began to
build collections of aircraft negatives. To expand their collections and
gain images from other geographic areas they established trading
agreements with other aviation photographers. They began shooting multiple
negatives of the aircraft they photographed. A relatively large
community of aircraft negative trading was formed. The American Aviation
Historical Society was formed, partly, to help provide accurate
information to allow members of the aviation photographer group to
identify the photographs in their collections and to aid in group
One of the members of the aviation photographers’
fraternity was Robert G. Hufford. Bob Hufford was among the first 100
members of the AAHS. He began photographing aircraft in the 1930s. In the
1990s Bob donated his collection of 4x5 and 2.25x2.25 black and white
aircraft negatives (there are a few color transparencies as well) to the
Society. The collection consists of over 16,000 negatives taken by Bob.
The aircraft Bob photographed were primarily commercial airline and
corporate transports. They represent an extensive record of commercial
aviation in America in the postwar period through the introduction of first
and second generation turbine transports. The collection has been
completely cataloged and is being digitized as volunteer time allows.
Negative numbers in the AAHS online image database that begin with 30000
and range to 46223 cover the Hufford collection.
Bob Hufford was an executive for Kodak dealing
with the motion picture industry. His duties required regular meetings at
their headquarters in Rochester, New York. Air transportation, at the
time, allowed the passenger a great deal of latitude in choosing their
route from point "A" to point "B." For Bob, the trip from Los
Angeles to Rochester would stop in New Orleans, Miami, Vancouver, British
Columbia or Montego Bay. Bob also drove to western airports on weekends
and on holidays. The negatives in the Hufford Collection represent
hundreds of airports. Bob was very organized regarding his negative
collection. Each negative is identified with the exact aircraft
. . .
Western Airlines Douglas DC-4 Skymaster
Operation Grasshopper: the opening of the inland of Suriname through the
During the 1950s the aviation
in Suriname came into a new phase: part of a large development program was
the opening of the rain forest-covered inland by the construction of
airstrips. These airstrps were mainly used for the search of minerals. A
number of U.S. aircraft and companies played an important role during this
Aviation in Suriname before
Being a Dutch colony since the
17th century, the economy of Suriname (or Dutch Guiana) was dominated
until the 1920s by coffee, cotton and wood production. However, compared
to the Dutch East-Indies (now Indonesia), the West Indies (Suriname and
Antilles) played a minor role, due to their small population. With the
Atlantic Ocean as an almost unbridgeable barrier, Dutch airline KLM
concentrated from the 1920s on pioneering the air-route to the Dutch
East-Indies. It wasn’t until 1934 that KLM started to operate in the
West-Indies, with the Antilles as a main base. Suriname, however, had been
a destination for scheduled U.S. air services since the 1920s.
The first aircraft in Suriname arrived on August
3, 1922, when a small LÃ©vy-Lepen R flying boat of Transport AÃ©rien
Guyanais landed in the capital city Paramaribo from French Guyana1. From
1923 to 1929 water-based aircraft visited Suriname frequently. From
mid-1929, Paramaribo was added as a stop on the flights from the New
York-Rio-Buenos Aires Airlines (NYRBA) aircraft operating the air route
the airline was named after. NYRBA used Consolidated Commodore flying
boats, which used the Suriname River at Paramaribo for landings. In 1930
Pan American Airlines (PAA) took over the NYRBA operations, and also
established the first domestic air service in Suriname: Paramaribo–Nickerie.
If wasn’t until 1939 that an airfield for
land-based aircraft was constructed in Suriname, at the Zanderij savannah
about 40 km south of Paramaribo. KLM West-Indisch Bedrijf (KLM West-Indies
branch) extended the Curacao-Port of Spain (Venezuela) service once a week
to Paramaribo using the Lockheed Super Electra. The Dutch government
provided financing for the construction of the airfield. KLM had been in
preparation for launching a transatlantic (mail) service, but the German
invasion of the Netherlands in May 1940 upset these plans. Notably, in
November 1939, eight USAF Boeing YB-17s, under the command of Gen. Delos
C. Emmons, on their . . .
Northrop YC-125B, PZ-TAD
Airplanes I Have Known - C-47 42-93585
What you might call financial
constraints have always limited my exposure to new airplanes except, that
is, when Uncle Sam was footing the bill. Then, on occasion, I was lucky
enough to be assigned to fly a brand new expensive machine. I recall a
PT-19, a BT-13 and a couple of "Useless" 78s in that category; and
then there was C-47 42-93585.
In June 1944 "˜585 arrived at Hamilton AAFB on
the shore of San Francisco Bay about the same time that we did, having
made one test flight and the trip up from the factory before it was
assigned to us - total time less than 10 hours. We were a crew of absolute
strangers. 1st Lt. Tom Gavey, pilot; 2nd Lt. R. Story, copilot; 1st Lt.
Paul "Smitty" Smith, navigator and Cpl. Bill Meyers, radio operator.
Of the four of us, only Smitty had ever flown anything much bigger than a
puddle jumper. Now our orders stated that we would deliver "˜585 to
Brisbane, Australia, which as near as I could figure was some 8,000 miles
over water with perhaps 200 miles of that within sight of land. We
were going island hopping and the first hop was a doozy - 2,600 miles,
more or less, to Hickam Field, Hawaii.
We were able to squeeze in just one test flight
before the big event. In three hours we went through everything in the
book (and some that wasn’t) and she came up clean as a whistle. (NOTE:
The Japanese did not invent quality control.)
The next time that we saw her she had been outfitted
with eight 100-gallon fiber auxiliary tanks mounted on wood frames, four
on each side of the cabin. This brought our total fuel up to 1,600
gallons, good for maybe 18 hours at cruise. It also made the fuel and oil
weight at takeoff very close to five tons and gross weight over 32,000
lbs. - or about three tons more than the CAA maximum gross for the same
airplane. This really simplified things. Takeoff was go/no go; we reverted
to single-engine status with twice the probability of failure.
The runway at Hamilton was quite long for that
era, about 8,000 ft. as I recall. About halfway down it, tail up, tires
still firmly planted and the two P & W’s doing the very best they
could, Gavey says "Feel this thing. I’m not sure it’ll fly." He
was right. It was about like pulling on a fence post. I suggested trim and
he rolled in a little that helped some but it was mostly a matter of
letting her go until we got enough speed. This happened shortly before the
end of the runway and I cycled the gear as quickly as I could when he
called for it.
We had taken off to the northeast, headed inland
and had to turn back over the bay. This we did quite gingerly, still at
max power. As we got squared away over the bay and aimed at the Golden
Gate Bridge, Smitty, who was standing behind us, suggested that maybe we
ought to consider going under it instead of over. But we cleared it by at
least 100 ft. and eased off on the power about the same time.
It was early evening as we left the coast and
chased the sunset. Thirty miles out we passed the Farallons, still
scratching for altitude. Rough seas were pounding those solitary
rocks. They were certainly an impossible haven; still they were to
be our last landfall until Diamond Head so they marked the transition from
that sense of the familiar to the unknown.
At briefing that morning we had been introduced
to the latest development in long distance flying - they called it cruise
control. We were given an extensive set of charts and tabulations; a
program of power settings for use throughout the flight, guaranteed to
extend our range and endurance. Having worked our way up to 8,000 ft. we
tilted her forward and I read . . .
Fliers of 1934
just something about aviation during the mid-1930s. The pace of both
civilian and military aviation development was speeding up. It was an era
that fostered the growth of new aeronautical ideas, designs, and know-how
that allowed pilots to push the envelope of flight. It was a time of
innovation and risk, of trial and of error. Just seven years after
Lindbergh’s epic flight to France and only five years before the start
of WWII, 1934 was a year of record hops, Army air postmen, and
high-altitude pressure suit tests. It was the year of aviators like Codos
and Rossi, DuPont, Hawks, Lindbergh, Marsalis and Richey, Picard, Post,
Rickenbacker, Turner, Ulm and Wedell – just to name a few. It was also a
period of novel aircraft like the flying pancake, parasol plane, flying
wing, rotating-wing gyro, and the tailless flivver. It was a time of
adventure. Consider a few of the aviation headlines from that year"¦
STRATOSPHERE HOP PLANNED
EIGHT KILLED IN CRASH AS AIRLINER HITS
GIANT PLANE MAKES FIRST HOP
NEW PLANE CARRIER TESTED
DARING PILOTS RISK DEATH IN SENSATIONAL AIR MEET
AVIATRIX PREPARES FOR BIG HOP
NOTED SPEED PILOT KILLED
REVERSIBLE PROPELLER TESTED
ARMY PREPARES FOR MASS HOP
These headlines are the actual
titles of aviation newsreel stories from 78 years ago.
Before television, there was
the newsreel. From the late-1920s to the mid-1960s, the major American
sound newsreel companies filmed all kinds of people, places and things "”
including the ups and downs of aviation. The newsreels typically appeared
twice a week at the local "movie palace," averaged nine minutes in
length, and featured up to a dozen stories. The newsreel was usually part
of the movie entertainment package that accompanied the cartoons and the
featured movies. Sound newsreels were truly an eyewitness to the middle
third of the 20th century. Today, they provide a unique moving-image
visual reference of the past, in glorious black and white.
Since the early 1970s, only one of the major newsreels has been readily
accessible for your review and royalty-free use: the Universal Newsreel.
This treasure trove of 35-millimeter celluloid includes over 14,800 motion
picture film reels. The surviving edited stories and outtakes are
available for your viewing pleasure at the National Archives and Records
Administration (NARA) facility at College Park, Maryland.
Regrettably, these newsreel stories are
usually silent. What, they’re silent? Weren’t these stories filmed in
the era of the talkies? Yes, . . .but as was the custom at the time,
Universal destroyed the film stock narration and music tracks soon after a
story was released, for . . .
Wiley Post in his pressure suit
Douglas Aircraft Company Retrospective, Part 1
contribution of Douglas Aircraft Company to American and world aviation is
well known. The company’s accomplishments are legendary and this series
of articles attempts to reveal the inner workings of a company that was in
the vanguard of developing commercial, military and research aircraft.
The following excerpts are taken from an
internal Douglas Co. management newsletter following WWII. The reprinting
of these brief in-house company announcements provide insight into
the internal operations of Douglas as they transitioned from the demands
of war to a postwar environment, and how they met the technological
challenges of the future.
reminiscences display that outstanding aircraft are the result of
dedicated personnel operating collectively in a highly technical,
innovative and competitive business environment.
Excerpts from the Douglas
dated February 1948
EXACT STATUS OF THE DC-9[1
]"” No decision to build yet. Plans are still in the making as revealed
by a letter dispatched to prospective customers from vice
president-domestic sales. It says Company is aware of crying need for a
transport to serve small fields and feeder operations as well as trunk
lines. It must carry passengers, mail, express and cargo at modern speeds,
economically and safely, as logical successor to DC-3. Proposed DC-9
offers "as simple and straightforward an airplane as possible. Includes
modern communications, fire prevention, surface anti-icing, greatly
improved comfort, terminally conditioned air and wall panels, cabin
pressurization, plus high performance."
Company is discussing project with airlines,
pilots, maintenance and service experts, armed forces and public. And
conducting intensive research on world conditions and markets. Do they
warrant full development of the DC-9 now? Decision will come with answers.
COMPETITIVE BIDS BY DOUGLAS
FOR A TRAINER AND A BOMBER, both
slick designs, are already submitted to Air Forces. Decision on the
trainer is expected in March, bomber later.
EL SEGUNDO’S NAVY AD-1
SKYRAIDER met every strength
requirement of specifications, passed all simulated landing tests and
carrier qualifications tests with "flying" colors. Then it went to sea
for Fleet operations assigned to newly formed squadrons. Carrier landings
really must be something! Even the AD-1 got skin wrinkles from the ordeal.
Happily, the problem is not unique. All
manufacturers of Navy aircraft fall victim, only sometimes much worse, to
unpredictable strength moments not required by contract. Skyraiders are
responding to face lifting with alacrity while filing the experience under
painful progress in the increasingly complicated aeronautical world.
D-558 SKYSTREAK. #3
airplane, continues final performance demonstration flights with test
pilot Gene May. Meanwhile, National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics
received first two Skystreaks last October and November. NACA pilots fly
them in the great scientific research program for which they were built.
Eminent scientists predict that D-558, product of El Segundo . . .
Field P-Numbers Revisited
mid-1950s AAHS member Warren Bodie with the assistance of Ms. Jennie
Reeves (custodian of the Wright Field still photo files), Peter M. Bowers,
William T. Larkins and John Sloan compiled an index of the aircraft tail
numbers (P-number) for McCook Field (and later Wright Field). The period
covered was 1918 through 1930. P-numbers were assigned to aircraft used in
engineering and research evaluations during this period. Even at this date
no one is sure what the "P" represented – plane, project or
procurement. Aviation historians and photograph collectors have long noted
these identifier numbers painted on the rudders of various aircraft. The
original list was published in Vol. 1, No. 4, of the AAHS Journal (October-December
The following is an updated listing of the McCook
Field P-numbers. It includes additional aircraft that were not in the
original listing, as well as information regarding the engines installed
(in many cases including their Air Service number). A notes column has
been added that contains additional information about the aircraft.
In addition to this printed listing, this
information has been converted into a searchable database that is
accessible to AAHS members under the "Research" tab in the "Members
Only" area of the AAHS website. Members may search by P-number, aircraft
manufacturer, type or serial number.
P-472, Douglas XA-2 Attack Bomber
Forum of Flight
The FORUM is presented as an opportunity for each member to participate in
the Journal by submitting interesting or unusual photographs. Negatives,
black-and-white or color photos with good contrast may be used if they
have smooth surfaces. Send submissions to the Editorial Committee marked
"Forum of Flight," P.O. Box 3023, Huntington Beach, CA
92605-3023. Mark any material to be returned: "Return to (your
name and complete address)."
Please include as much information as possible about the photo such as:
date, place, names, etc., plus proper credit (it may be part of your
collection but taken by another photographer).
Douglas DB-7A Boston
Dekker, in Memorium
In February, after a brief combination of health issues, our "Flying
Dutchman," Kase Dekker, took his final flight. Kase has been a member of
the AAHS Board of Directors for a couple decades. He is survived by his
wife Willie, his daughter Corinne, and his son John. Kase was a Dutchman.
We found, after he died, that his given name was Cornelis. Kase grew up in
German-occupied Holland. He shared memories of having German troops
quartered in his family’s home and what it was like to be on the
receiving end of OPERATION CHOWHOUND, the Allied food-drop mercy flights
into occupied Holland at the end of WWII.
Kase worked for KLM in Holland before coming to
the United States were he began working for American Airlines. Kase
was an entrepreneur. He established and operated a travel agency. For a
period of time, he also operated a business that marketed airliner display
Kase loved all aspects of commercial aviation and
influenced the Society in this area through his volunteer efforts.
Over the years, he filled a number of roles at AAHS headquarters. Most
recently he has been in charge of the photo collection. The organization
of the photo collection has advanced significantly under Kase’s
stewardship and he was a major contributor in efforts to update the photo
catalog. Prior to this he had coordinated book reviews. Kase
impacted the editorial content of the Journal and FLIGHTLINE during
his years on the Board of Directors. As our new president, Jerri Bergen,
has said, "Kase is up to his neck in commercial aviation history."
This passion brought numerous articles and pieces of art to the Journal
through Kase’s contacts and effort.
The Society will miss his pragmatism and
contributions and wish his family well.
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