Confessions of an Air Show Announcer; From Tankers to Warbirds


November 1, 2022

After serving aboard the Coral Sea, General Motors TBM-3E Bu53785 (NL7075C) became tanker 55 with Reeder Flying Service in Idaho. Restored in Royal Navy colors, it flew with Planes of Fame at FCM. It still reeked from the chemicals it had carried.

The alarm interrupted the smoke jumper presentation "Ladies and gentlemen, please move to the side of the room,

we have an alert." Obediently, we tourists moved to the side

as the jumpers accessed their gear and exited. Once they

were out of the building, we were allowed to go outside to

the edge of the ramp upon which a CASA 212 and a venerable

C-47A (N100Z) in United States Forest Service white and

red awaited with engines already starting to turn over.

Behind me I heard big radial engines, power being pulled

back, coming in to land. The lead aircraft was a Lockheed

Neptune (N4235N), tank...

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