mardi 16 octobre 2012

Focus on RCAF 2 Wing Grostenquin in Air Fan this month

Air Fan's last issue (n° 407, october 2012) is now available ! This month, to celebrate the 60th anniversary of RCAF 2 Wing's arrival in Grostenquin France, you will find my 9-page article inside. Richly illustrated, this first part brings back to light some of the twelve years of the base's activity.

From operation  Leapfrog 2 accross the Atlantic, to the Canadair Sabre golden age in the european skies, highlighted by the Sky Lancers aerobatic team, you will be told about quite a part of canadian aviation history as well as history of cold war in Europe.

To get the end of the story, from CF-100 Canuck to CF-104 Starfighter, do not miss Air Fan's next issue, N° 408 November 2012 .


Order here!

lundi 15 octobre 2012

65 years after, he breaks, the sound barrier - again !

Incredible! Chuck Yeager, first man to break the sound barrier - on october 14th 1947, 65 years ago - just did it again today to commermorate his historical flight's anniversary.

The thing is that, today, he is just 89 years old! Of course, he was not flying the F-15 today, just seating in the rear, but Yeager used to fly miltary jet until quite an age! In 1955-56, this worlwide renowned american pilot served within the USAFE, commanding the 417th Fighter Bomber Squadron out of Toul-Rosières, France, flying the F-86H Sabrejet.

This exceptional pilot, WW2 Ace, remains really healthy to endure such a flight. To discover or rediscover his sound barrier achievement just watch Philip Kaufman's Right Stuff. Great job Chuck!

jeudi 11 octobre 2012

Sixty years ago, Canada's Air Force settled in Grostenquin, France

2 Fighter Wing Sabre's arrival on the Grostenquin flightline,
october 11th of 1952...  60 years ago!

Today is the day to celebrate the 60th anniversary of former RCAF air base at Grostenquin, France, as the three Sabre squadrons composing No. 2 Fighter Wing landed on this airfield on october,  11th of 1952. At this time, the base was nothing but a giant mess, as work was in progress all over the place.    

In the early 1950's, RCAF deployed four Sabre wings in Europe as part of NATO, to face the soviet threat. Over the years, No. 1 Air Division in Europe changed its size and composition to take on strength new aicrafts, such as the all-weather fighter CF-100 Canuck, then, the CF-104 Starfighter in a dual strike/recce role which sped Grostenquin air base's closure, en 1964.

To celebrate this anniversary, and to bring back to light this air base's history, do not miss the forthcoming Air Fan magazine issues (n° 407 october 2012 and n° 408 november 2012) : I authored a two-part richly illustrated retrospection devoted to Grostenquin air base (only in french, sorry guys!).

If you live in the neighbourhood (and if you understan french), you are welcome to attend a lecture I will give on this same subject at the Société d'Histoire du pays Naborien (Saint-Avold history society), lon friday novembre 9th at 8:00 pm; - (free admittance!). Take a look at the invitation HERE.

Finally, in the meantime, to take preview of what you will attend (or miss) you still can take a look at the Nancy-Ochey French Air Force base's historical research center's newsletter, depicting a visit of the former air base realized some months ago (once again, text is only in french...) : it is on pages 3 and 4  just clic HERE.