Historic airport continues to thrive

Souther Field

History is an important part of most airports. You often find plaques telling of notable events at the airport. If Souther Field/Jimmy Carter Regional Airport (ACJ) in Americus, Georgia, was to create such a plaque, it would need a surface the size of the Green Monster, the high left field wall at Fenway Park in Boston.

“A lot has happened at Souther Field since it was created out of a peach tree orchard in 1918,” said Mike Cochran, the field historian.

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Injured soldier gains new lease on life — in the air

Sport_2S

The folks at Quicksilver Aeronautics say they are especially pleased to report the sale of a Special Light-Sport Aircraft, the Sport S2SE, to a different sort of customer — a war hero. While any aircraft delivery is satisfying, this one deserves extra attention, they say.

“I met Jimmy Aguila recently. He called me to say he wanted a Quicksilver  Sport 2SE SLSA,” said Quicksilver Aeronautics President and CEO Will Escutia. “Every day I come to work and face the problems and challenges of running a business. However Jimmy’s story adds proper perspective to life. Jimmy’s story captured my attention and I feel humbled.”

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Night flight ends in fatal crash

Aircraft: Piper Warrior. Injuries: 1 Fatal. Location: Marana, Ariz. Aircraft damage: Destroyed.

What reportedly happened: The non-instrument-rated pilot had amassed an estimated 185 hours of total flight experience, of which 7.3 hours were conducted at night over sparsely populated terrain. He had flown the route twice before in the day time.

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Plastic Fantastic P-51

SW51_profile

By any number of surveys, the P-51 Mustang is one of the most admired airplanes in the history of aviation. Even though that statement sounds bold — on the verge of exaggeration — most readers will surely agree.

Like most aviators, I’ve never flown in an original P-51, although I have flown in a light kit version called the 5151 and a closer-to-original-size S-51. The Loehle Aviation version was made entirely of wood and had a Rotax two-stroke engine. While it had the right basic shape, it was docile to fly … unlike the immensely powerful original, I’m told. The Stewart Aircraft iteration was bigger and bold, powered by a 450-horsepower Corvette engine.

However, while both were close-enough recreations of the original to be desirable, even a non-pilot could tell they were replicas. I see nothing wrong with that, but is it simply too challenging to make one that looks truly like the original? It turns out the answer is “no.” Someone finally did do so.

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