I FLEW B-26 WITH 2ND AND 6TH TOW FROM 52 TO 55 AT NEWCASTLE, DEL AND JOHNSON JAPAN....ONE GREAT AIRPLANE....THEN WENT TO CALIFORNIA AND SERVED AS INSTRUCTOR IN RESERVES AT LONG BEACH, CA...
W. Ed Norwood, e-mail, 30.04.2013 21:12
Correction to my original comment: Lew with Pilot Jim Raffauf & Gunner Dave Benton.
Klaatu83, e-mail, 20.04.2013 16:29
This aircraft had often been subject to confusion with the Martin B-26 Marauder. During World War II the U.S. Army Air Air Force designated the Martin Marauder "B-26" (B for Bomber), and the Douglas Invader "A-26" (A for Attack). In 1947, when the U.S. Air Force was established as an independent branch of the service, one of the changes made was to abolish the old "A for Attack" designation. Since all the Martin Marauder bombers had been retired by that time, the designation for Douglas Invader was simply changed from "A-26" to "B-26". The Douglas Invader remained in service for many years thereafter, throughout the 1950s in fact, and even into the 1960s, referred to under the designation "B-26".
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Henry George Butler, e-mail, 27.11.2012 05:19
It was a well built airplane. After 51 missions, it was very stable and it brought me home. Easy to fly.
John Hannum, e-mail, 27.10.2012 23:35
I finished up WWII with the 3rd Attack Group 90th Sqd. at Atsugi Air Base, Japan. Great aircraft and great people. The A-26 carried more Cal. 50's than the 17 ,24 or 29. 8 in the nose, 3 in each wing and 2 in each of the G.E. remote turrets.A real peice of equipment.--Jack
victor hull, e-mail, 31.08.2012 09:44
Flew 32 low level night interdiction missions in korea. The only parachute that didn't hang up on somthing in the gunners compartment was a chest pack which I stowed in a corner. I figured if we got hit at our low level it was all over anyway. the primary exit was the bomb bay.
Donald Tipton, e-mail, 29.08.2012 02:34
I had the great priviledge of working on this great aircraft as crew chief and occassionly flying on it. I was a proud member of the 603 Air Commando Sq with this aircraft at England AFB from 65-69 and moved with them to Hurlburt Field in 1969 with them. Soon after we sent them off to the bone yard and other countries. I have pictures if it everywhere. Definitely the best Acft I've ever worked on.
B Fielder, e-mail, 13.08.2012 01:57
Had the privlage of working on this FINE aircraft on two different occasions. The 1st was 1944-45 at Douglas Long Beach. After the 1st flight, we were issued "squawk-sheets" for problems encountered on the that flight. This sheet handled by a 16 year old fresh out of the "ozarks". The 2nd was in 1950 when they were being taken out of "mothballs", and prepared for the Korean Police Action. I know of one that is located in the "Lyon Air Museum" at the Orange County Airport in California. It is still Flyable.
James Robinson, e-mail, 28.07.2012 23:54
I was stationed at RAF Station Sculthorpe in late 56 and early 57. I went down to base ops one day and asked if they had anything that I could fly in just for fun. They put me on a B-26. I sat in the nose gunner's seat and could look up, down, and all around through the plexiglass. We flew all over England doing radar checks and touch and go's. I really enjoyed the priviledge.
STAN BODNER, e-mail, 30.05.2012 01:14
I flew B26's (now re-designated to its WWII name, A26,)flying NATO cold war missions as Navigator/Bombardier in Laon, France, 1953-1956. We flew low altitude missions in Western Europe. We also deployed to North Africa (Libya and Morocco) in 1953 and 1954, where we trained French pilots in B26s. Many of these French pilots were sent to combat in the French colony of Indochina (later to be known as Vietnam. This old warhorse (the B26, not me), was fast, reliable and an effective and destructive instrument of war. I loved it.
Larry, e-mail, 04.05.2012 09:31
Gunners: Using the periscope sight, could scan above and below or did you have to alternate?
T Green, e-mail, 29.04.2012 00:28
I remember my uncle being called back into the Korean War as a navigator on the B-26; flying 50 night missions. I was just a kid but he gave me his baseball cap when he returned, with 50 bombs sewn on the bill, one for each mission. His name was John Duff. Anyone remember him.
frank jervis, e-mail, 11.02.2012 21:18
This is my 2nd entry. I went through gunner school at Lowry AF Base in Denver. After this we had to choose which plane we wanted to go to combat, the B-26 or B-29. I choose the 26 and went to Langley Field for flying training and crewed up there. Then went to Stead AF Base for survival training, 15 days in the mountains of California with no food. Then to Korea, at K-9 AF Base. I was in the 17th Bomb Group and 34th Bomb Squadron and flew 25 combat mission on the B26. Had 22 missions in, all at night and one morning they woke us up and told us to get to the flight line. In briefing they told us we were going to be flying low and bombing troops. I flew 3 missions in one day and we sustained a lot of flack damage on one mission and the pilot called me and told me to prepare for bailout. I got ready and he called a few minutes later and said he thought we could get back. We had about 100 holes in the plane but she got us home. Thank God. I remember one of our planes had nose art of RICE PADDY WAGON and belonged to a Major Rice. Another was the GOLDEN BEAR and was named for a night club in Miho, Japan. I was in this club when on A R&R after 10 mission. The B-26 was a wonderful plane and very versital. Would dive bomb or fly at 30 thousand feet.After the day that we flew 3mission, I was rotated home and the next day it was announced that the cease fire had been signed. But I was heading home. 36 hours later we landed in Los Angles and then flew home to Louisville where all my family was there to meet me. So long ago.
Frank Jervis, e-mail, 09.02.2012 17:02
I was a gunner on a B26, stationed at K-9 Pusan East AF Base, South Korea. I flew 25 missions and she always brought us home, no matter the problems. Great airplane. My pilot was 1st Lt. Kevin Evans and Navigator/Bombardier was 2nd Lt. Lees Broome. I loved those guys.
Robert Cebina, e-mail, 28.12.2011 21:34
I had the privilege of being able to work on the 26's from July 68 July 69.It was great working on them. I love it when those engines fired up and that some and oli came out of those engines. As strange as it may seem I do miss that period in my life.
This Aircraft has to be one of the best this country has ever had. I flew on one during the Korean war. Was shot down, and had it not been for the endurance of this Acft. I would not be writeing this now. God bless the people who designed and built them.
Lee Korb, e-mail, 16.11.2011 00:58
spent a lot of time around a one-of-a-kind A-26 in Pgh., Pa. back in the late 50's/early 60's. A corporate hot rod for sure. To my knowledge, it was the only one to ever be pressurized!! Owned by Mesta Machine Co.(the folks who produced the 16" guns on the WWII Battleships among other miracles of that era). Rode in it several times....had to crawl up to the cockpit(before the Onmark Conversion). Flew my old Fairchild C-123 in and out of NKP a few times while in SEA, and saw that operation. Hard duty for those guys, but just as bad... the airframes were aging enough that some were lost due to wing failures as well.
Don Hetticher, e-mail, 26.10.2011 19:10
I was in VU2 from 1955-1958,was Plane Capt.& flew the rt. seat on JD1 #6.Great airplane,would love to hear from any one who was in the squadron.
bombardier, e-mail, 02.09.2011 11:32
That plane was very effective.It entered service at the end of WW2 and it was still available to do effective service in vietnam 20 years later.
Joe Hawkins, e-mail, 17.08.2011 23:50
To John Kelly,
John,I remember you. When the event you describe happened I was on duty as a GCA operator. We were set up on runway 22, which was short, and where the GCA was only 500 feet off the runway. When the tower hit the alarm bell we all got the hell out-- I was covered with the curtain behind the operating seats. The aircraft lost its left gear and climbed to the left passing between the runway and the GCA.
Walter Brooks, e-mail, 31.07.2011 04:12
I was the crew chief on two B-26's tail numbers 571 and 503 great machines to work on this was with 5th Tow Target Squadron Neubiberg Air Base Germany 1954-1958.let me hear from some of the 5th men.
W.A. Cardinal, e-mail, 05.07.2011 20:01
Was with the 5th Tow Target Head Quarters at Neubiberg 1954 till the last when the base was turned over to the Germans. Have a copy of the 'Yearbook' Have lot good memories of our B-26s [A-26]
Don, e-mail, 29.06.2011 00:18
Hi Wayne, Remember me, I was in the 6th tow target squadron at Johnson,s Airbase. I would like to contact you. I have photos of aircraft 391.
Bob Seiger, e-mail, 05.06.2011 02:16
After returning from Korea (Army) and w/Korean President Rhee threatening to "march north and unify Korea" with a gillion Chinese on the other side of DMZ and my still facing 4 years of reserve time, I decided to join the AF reserve and get out of the army reserve so, in case all hell broke out again, I'd be going back over as a "flyboy" instead of "grunt". The planes used by my new reserve unit (the 452nd out of Long Beach, CA ) was the fabulous B-26s (glass nose versions). At our summer 2 week training in Chico, CA, it was so hot that the flight line mechanics had to keep their tools in buckets of cold water so they wouldn't fry their hands when working on the planes. While out on the town one night(not too much excitement in Chico, CA), I met an old high school buddy whom I hadn't seen since school and who was a pilot in our reserve unit. Consequently, I got to tag along (in the nose) on a few night missions to a practice bombing range West of Reno. An "E" ticket ride if there ever was one with not nav lights formations, inverted banks maneuvers and diving into the valley firing rockets into old buildings, tank hulks, etc. With the exception of nobody shooting back at you, it was probably pretty much like the real thing. The best part of the summer camp was when I got to fly right seat back to our Long Beach base taking over the controls from Sacramento to L.A. A real experience since the only "stick" time I'd ever had, at the time, was in a J-3! Conclusion...the B-26 Invader was and is still one hell of a hot rod airplane and if any of you ever get the opportunity to fly one or get a ride in one, go for it..you'll like it!
Robert C. Finch, e-mail, 31.05.2011 23:28
The 47th Bomb Group flew A-26C's from bases in Italy during 1945. You can look up the history of the 47th on the internet for the names of the bases. After 1945, the 47th was stationed at Lake Charles, LA, and Biggs AFB, El Paso< Tx with A-26c's painted black for night attack missions.
appius cavalcanti, e-mail, 28.04.2011 19:10
my uncle cauby pinheiro,fly in 5th aviation group in natal.i was live within him and remember this wonderful airplane flying near in our house.im airline captain(737-800)and dont forget these gold years.
Wayne Camp, e-mail, 27.04.2011 06:43
I was crew chief Flt. Mechanic on a B-26 while in the 6th Tow Traget Sq.Based at Johson Air Force Base in Japan 1952 to Sept. 1954. If I remeber right the number was 4391. I crewed that aircraft for two years. Great Aircraft.
Russ Kovach, e-mail, 08.04.2011 19:10
Was Crew Chief 0n 4139267 at Long Beach Municipal Airport. 1954-55. We trained reserves and kept pilots up on flying time. Loved this plane. Later went on B-29s and it was like going from a Corvette to a Greyhound Bus.
Lisa, e-mail, 03.04.2011 01:54
My Dad will turn 90 this June, he was a pilot in the Army Air Corp and mentioned flying the B-26 for tow targets. Never went into combat, started as Enlisted Air Crew. Trying to find anyone that may have been stationed with him. He was at Altus, OK and Marianna Fl, his time served was Jan '42 - Sep '45
John F. Smith, e-mail, 26.03.2011 01:43
I am currently a member of a volunteer crew at the New England Air Museum in Windsor Locks, CT which is 7 years into restoring a A-26C Invader. It was named the Reida Rae and flew 39 combat missions in the European Theater in 1944-45.
Clyde O'Neill, e-mail, 16.03.2011 08:12
When I arrived at NAF Naples (Italy) in 1956, there were two JD-1 aircraft used for towing target sleeves for Sixth Fleet gunnery practice. These aircraft were replaced by two AD-5W Skyraiders modified with tow reels operated by an AO (Aviation Ordinanceman) for the same mission.
Bill Carlson (Msgt RET), e-mail, 07.03.2011 17:25
Was crew chief/eng. on RB-26's At Shaw AFB SC in 52-54. Great plane. Did single engine take offs as part of training for Korea bound pilots. B&C models
Jerry Kuechmann, e-mail, 05.03.2011 18:50
I flew this plane while in VU-7 at NAS North Island 1961-63. Good handling plane with ample power. Would climb at 1,200 ft/min on one engine using 2,400 RPM and 40 inches manifold pressure right after takeoff. Used for target towing, radar tracking and simulated attacks on USN ships. Of the 14 types of aircraft I flew, it was one of my two favorites. The other being the Chance Vought F-8 Crusader.
W. Ed Norwood, e-mail, 05.03.2011 18:44
I flew in 26 in 1945 as Bombardier/Navigator. Great bird! Lost engine on takeoff, no problem. My last flight with pilot, Dave Raffauf,we did shortest and longest takeoff runs possible.Still remember that great, fun day.
Harry Kline, e-mail, 03.03.2011 14:36
We had several B26's at Mitchel AFB near Hempstead, NY in 2nd Tow Target Squadron. I worked navaids on them and once got to ride jumpseat on a tow over the CZ and down into Colombia. That was in 1957-58. It was a great airplane then, and still is now after most being converted to firefighters.
Irv Baum, e-mail, 03.03.2011 06:59
Wwhat base handled tramsition to the A-26C in the 50-51 period? A very stable and forgiving aircraft
Al Williams, e-mail, 28.02.2011 01:14
Was with 5th Radar Calibration Unit at Greenville AFB and later at Pope AFB at the start of the Korean war. We had 2 B-26 in service and on June 28 1949 lost one out of Loveland Co,. - Fatal - lost 4 men and aircraft. When we got back to Pope we were given B-25's. My pilot was Capt.Pascal Corritore.l
John (Jack) Kelly, e-mail, 27.02.2011 08:25
I was NCOIC of GCA Radar Maint. at Haneda Air Base in Tokyo, Japan in 1953-54. One beautifil summer day without a cloud in the sky an A-26 decided to make a touch and go at our Base. Haneda had a 6 or 8 foot sea wall around it, the top of which was the same elevation as the runway. Some how the pilot miscalculated, and the left prop started cutting the runway just past the sea wall. The pilot got the plane back in the air, feathered the prop and went home. To Yokota Air Base as I recall. I didn't see the accident but the tower operators did, and called and asked us to take a look at the runway. There were about 10 or 12 gouges in the runway where the prop cut it.
Jim Rose, e-mail, 24.02.2011 07:26
I transitioned to B-26s right out of pilot training in 1953. Was in the 90th Bomb Squadron at K-8 for 9 months and then transfered to the 6th Tow Target Sqdn. after we moved to Johnson AB in Japan. There was nothing with a propeller that could keep up with us below 10,000'--- The firepower was awesome and flying it was a dream. Single engine performance was outstanding. I had 2 engine failures on take-offs. One with a full crew and bomb load. It's flyable!!!
D. Orr, e-mail, 10.02.2011 23:23
I had the great fortune to fly the left seat and crew one of these great aircrafts (1974-77. It was an OnMark conversion with a airstair door on the right rear side, bombay sealed. I was flying with the US Government. We had three defferant type of cameras and infared scanning equipment in the sealed bambay whihc was part of the rear cabin. We had two of these aircarft both used in aerial sensing and photgraphing. We flew all over the Untied States, just about every state. It was a joy to fly, always attracting attention everywhere we landed. Put a little over 1500 hours on it. Loved it. Unfortunaly it was destroyed in a crash when the pilot owners (civilian) flew it into the side of a mountain. The only problem was flying this beast on 100LL fuel, kept her pretty much on the timid side.
John Lingrel, e-mail, 05.02.2011 12:36
I worked on the 26 at NKP from 67 to 69 as a Comm/Nav technician. Of all the aircraft I worked on durning my Air Force stint, it was probably my favorite. Not hard to work on, and it is the most beautiful aircraft I have ever seen. As an RC modeler now, I have plans to build one in the near future
Ben Silva, e-mail, 25.01.2011 04:41
I was always fascinated with this aircraft, when I I first saw it. I was stationed at a small base in Taiwan 1963 , and they had a Air America facility there , it was pretty much covered and it only flew out at night, I will never forget that tail section., always wanted to know what kind it was then.
Charlie C.Garza (CMSGT) Ret, e-mail, 22.01.2011 00:57
After completing tec school I was assigned to Langley AFB,Va and assigned to the 500th Bomb Sq. I was a radio/ nav technician working on this aircraft as we were transitioning to the B-57 B aircraft. It was a fine aircraft and easy to work on. I once flew in one from Langley to Brooks AFB Texas on an easter weekend and I really enjoyed the flight.I still remember the aircraft serial number 4435436
Langley AFB, VA....1951-54. My first assignment after A&E school. 4440 Combat Crew Trng Sq. After working as A/C mechanic (periodic MX), I was transfered to the Test Flight Branch. We flew all required test flights prior to returning the planes to the flying sqadrons. What a thrill for a 21 year old airman. Capt Wise was the test pilot. I (as well as Sgt Corley, Sgt Cable) would fly with him. Fond memories of a great airplane for it's time.
Vicki Arceci, e-mail, 13.01.2011 03:55
Does anyone know what airfields the A-26 flew out of in Italy during WWII? My father was a rear gunner on one.
Carlos Motta de Souza, e-mail, 12.01.2011 03:48
I was assigned to Brazilian Air Force 5th Aviation Group (Natal, Brazil) to fly this beutiful and gentle to handle aircraft from 1962 until 1969. In order to perform a great up grade, I led 5 from 15 a/c, from Natal to Tucson/AZ in 1966 and in 1968 from Tucson backing to Natal. I love this bird.
samuel marsico, e-mail, 18.12.2010 03:59
I earned my wings at LaJunta, Col in aug 44,Flew B5 there, sent to DelRio, Tex, Laughlin Fld, for oper tng in Martin B26. Next was Barksdale Fld Shreveport, La.Assigned a crew ready to go. Jan 45 orders cancelled.Sent to Florence AAfb to fly The Dream Bird A26. One pilot,engineer gunner in rear, 6 50's in nose for pursuit and strafing and bomb bay for skipping. All tng was low level and night . Nov 45 wwii had ended , sent to WestoverFld, Mass, flew transition for couple months,in active reserve, FOB in Dalhart, Tex. Always wanted to get to fly the Bird. I agree, one helluva bird. Always brought ya home.Fast, easy to fly, forgave alot, outran the Jugs at SumterFld, SC many time, never won in a dog fght, cruised in sgl eng with no problem. Happy day's. Sorry I never got to go to combat.
a.casais, e-mail, 19.11.2010 21:25
sorry, this is not the widowmaker, the one is the B-26 Martin Marauder, i confused the numbers.
a.casais, e-mail, 18.11.2010 21:19
At this plane, they use to called, " the widowmaker" i guess why?
George radell, e-mail, 12.11.2010 06:56
I was a tow reel operator on B-26's during 1951 to 1953. I was in the 4th tow target squadron based at Georgge AFB in Victorville Califotnia and also flew at our remote base,Larson AFB, in Moses Lake Washington. We towed both banner and sleeve targets for the sixth army On the west coast.it was always an exciting aircraft and very versatile. Great memories!
Ed Parker, e-mail, 10.11.2010 04:53
I crewed the B26 then A26s at England AFB supporting the training of what would become the Nimrods in Thailand. I truly regret not getting to go to Thailand with a great plane and a great bunch of guys. Tail #641 is in Tucson at the Pima Air Museum and I crewed that aircraft.
Randy Schamberger, e-mail, 31.10.2010 07:13
I was an instructor navigator in the A-26A flying out of England AFB, LA, '68-69 for aircrews heading for NKP, Thailand. It was the best and most challenging job a nav could have. As a right seater, you were actually a co-pilot controlling mixtures, armament switches, coordinating with the pilot on almost everything. Some navs with more time in the aircraft than I did actually did take-offs and landings. I did get lots of stick time in the air. One of our aircraft is on display at Hurlburt Field, FL. Every time I see it I get homesick.
Ross Snyder, e-mail, 11.10.2010 23:23
I was a plane captain on a Invader with 800 hrs flying in one from 52-55. It was for towing for the navy at Gitmo VU-10. Navy bought 150 from the AF for this type mission. The A-26c was renamed navy JD-1. A good airplane, would always take you and bring you back.
mark A. Gasiorowski, e-mail, 23.09.2010 19:20
Hi Folks , Trying to find A-26 pictures during the fifties at Newark Airport New jersey Air National Guard. Thanks
Robert Dusick, e-mail, 20.09.2010 02:45
stationed in NKP Non Khom Phanom Thiland 1965-66 saw some at work there. Sweet.
Robert S, Lindley, e-mail, 18.09.2010 06:04
Stumbled onto the site and what great stories. I currently crew on an Invader on the airshow circuit repping the 13th B/S during the Korean War and have done so for 10 years. To those of you who have either flown or turned wrenches on these beautiful birds, we also honor your experiences and efforts. To be around an Invader is to be smitten, something we all share whether it be 'then' or now.
Always enjoy hearing from Invader folks. Regards.
CHARLES MATHEWS, e-mail, 08.09.2010 06:32
FLEW THE B-26 AT K-9 IN KOREA. FANTASTIC AIRCRAFT. FLEW THE F-84 AND B-57 LATER. NOTHING COMPETES WITH THE B-26 FOR A REAL FLYING MACHINE. SOMETIMES WE WOULD DOG FIGHT WITH THE ROK F-51s FROM THE OTHER FIELD AT PUSAN AND WE WOULD WIN EVERY TIME BELOW 10,000 FT. ABOVE THAT IT WAS NO CONTEST.
John Young, e-mail, 01.09.2010 00:07
My father was working at Douglas Long Beach during WW II when he first was assigned to the B-26B engineering department. He and his co-workers drew the full size drawings for production of the B-26B. He worked on all the drawings for the cockpit, oil cooler intakes, and wing guns. These guns originally had "visor" or "eyelid" movable covers over them but this approach was dropped before production. He took our family to the Douglas plant for an open-house where a test pilot flew a B-26B that took off from a runway next to the viewing stand after locking the brakes and getting up to max power before letting off the brakes. The nose came up immediately and it was several hundred feet off the ground when it passed in front of the crowd. What an airplane! It had a laminar flow wing section that had to be so smooth he had to wear soft leather "booties" when on the wing taking measurements.
Bob Sternberg, 31.08.2010 04:46
One of the most responsive and fun to fly airplanes around. We had them in Korea and the 1st Tow Target Squadron, towing for the Army at Ft. Bliss, El Psao, Texas. It had power to spare and had excellent armorment.
Jerry Sutts, e-mail, 30.08.2010 18:32
I flew as a gunner on B-26's at K-8, Korea in 1952-53 for 50+ combat missions. I then returned to Langley AFB and flew B-26's there until the aircraft was replaced by B-57's in 1955. A great aircraft and a great experience.
Don Goeke, e-mail, 26.08.2010 07:33
I was an aircraft electrician and had just got stationed at Itazuke AB,Japan and I got sent to Bien Hoa, Vietnam TDY in January 1963to the 1st Air Commando outfit and when I walked on to the flight line it was like I went back in history as the front line bomber we had was the Douglas B-26. Let me tell you this little aircraft was a jewel in my eyes. We had two glass nose, then we had a mixture of 26's with 6 and 8 guns in the nose and all of them had the 3 in each wing. I was with them for 6 months and enjoyed every day. The only thing I regret is that I never got a flight in one.
Don Goeke, e-mail, 26.08.2010 07:28
I was an aircraft electrician and had just got stationed at Itazuke AB,Japan and I got sent to Bien Hoa, Vietnam TDY to the 1st Air Commando outfit and when I walked on to the flight line it was like I went back in history as the front line bomber we had was the Douglas B-26. Let me tell you this little aircraft was a jewel in my eyes. We had two glass nose, then we had a mixture of 26's with 6 and 8 guns in the nose and all of them had the 3 in each wing. I was with them for 6 months and enjoyed every day. The only thing I regret is that I never got a flight in one.
Henry J Bendinelli, e-mail, 17.08.2010 08:48
The first time I saw this aircraft, only the big square rudder and fin were sticking up above a hangar as I was a million miles away, marching in formation as an aviation cadet at Maxwell field Alabama. Troop Carrier Command saw me in C-47's & later C-46's in England and France. After WW-2 it was Reserve flying in C-46's again, and later, navigating Douglas DC-4's with Alaska Airlines on the Anchorage-Tokyo run.
In January 1952 I saw the B-26 again at Kimpo airfield, Korea. I flew 41 missions as navigator in RB-26 aircrafts during Korean war-----12th Tactical Recon Squadron. Although I was not at all new to flying, but the more I flew in that Douglas creation the more I admired the Douglas aircraft designers. Rugged and reliable, you could depend upon it to get you out of a tight situation FAST, when you badly needed it. A truly impressive aircraft. The only fault I had with it was it was a terrificly NOISY aircraft---every cylinder of those beautiful Pratt & Whitney R-2800 engines, exhausting directly out into the atmosphere--and against the crew's eardrums.
But good 'Ol Uncle Sam has issued me excellent hearing aids, and at age 86 I'm still navigating a new pair of skis, and also bicycling and hiking. I'm not complaining at all, and what a splendid batch of memories I have!
JOHN HAGAMAN, e-mail, 03.08.2010 05:52
+I WAS A PILOT WITH THE 391ST BG IN EUROPE WHEN THEY PHASED OUT THE B-26...I RECALL WHEN THEY DELIVERED THE FIRST A-26 TO OUR GROUP--A REAL FINE AIRCRAFT...THE GROUP AND SQUADRON LEADERS FLEW WITH THE NAVIGATOR IN THE PLEXIGLAS NOSE--ALL OTHERS CARRIED JUST A CREW OF TWO- THE PILOT AND THE GUNNER...---WE FLEW MISSIONS INTO THE ALPS--ALSO WAS ATTACKED BY EARLY GERMAN JET AIRCRFT--THEY WOULD MAKE JUST ONE PASS---OUR GUNNERS USING THE REMOTELY CONTROLLED GUNS FOUND IT ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE TO TRACK THE JETS..WE DID SOME BOMBING OF RAIL JUNCTIONS AND BRIDGES....EXCELLENT BOMBING RESULTS...WONDERFUL AIRPLANE --CARRIED HEAVY BOMB LOAD ...AFTER THE WAR ENDED IN EUROPE, WE TRAINED FOR LOW LEVEL FLYING BEFORE BEING ASSIGNED TO THE PACIFIC VIA THE AFRICA TO SOUTH AMERICA ROUTE OVER THE ATLANTIC...LARGE FUEL TANKS INSTALLED IN THE BOMB BAY..READY TO GO WHEN THE WAR IN THE PACIFIC ENDED--LEFT OUT PLANES IN HOLLAND AND SAILED HOME ON A LIBERTY SHIP... STILL HAVE FOND MEMORIES OF THOSE B-26 AIRPLANES...
Bob O'Connell, e-mail, 20.07.2010 20:48
Our squadron had 2 B-26's which had been modified to towtarget aircraft. I was a tow target operator for 3596 Training Squadron(Combat Crew) which was formed at the beginning of the Korean War, June 1950, at Nellis AFB, Nevada. We towed 6x9 flag(banner) targets for aerial gunnery at 12000, or 20000 ft. We started with F-51's, converted to F-80's, and then to F-86's. We even tried to tow a series of canard winged gliders, with not much success. Hundreds of hours in the B-26, both in aerial gunnery missions, and also we flew cross country to retrieve any live ammunition from some of our aircraft which didn't make it back from cross-country trips. I was also an instructor at the Armament School at Lowry Field, Denver Co. Was sent TDY to Nellis for the USAF gunner meet in March-April 1950, and then was reassigned to Nellis at the start of the Korean War.
Carl Lindberg III, e-mail, 31.05.2010 07:17
My father, Carl Lindberg (a B-25 pilot from WWII), flew B-26s in 24 night intruder combat missions as a member of the 37th Bomb Squadron in Korea. He was awarded his second DFC and his fifth, sixth and seventh Air Medal for various actions during this inherently hazardous night flying during the period from 03DEC52 to 07NOV53. Dad was proud of his Korean War service, grew to like the B-26 almost as much as the B-25, but was unhappy that this war was forgotteen by many or just called a "Police Action". Dad retired in 1969 as a LTC and died in February, 2005.
Joe Jefferis, e-mail, 20.04.2010 18:46
I flew 156 combat missions during 1968 and 1969 in the A-26A (B-26K). A great airplane for he mission we had. 609th Special Operation Sq. In late 1969 Air Force retired the A-26's and replaced them with AC-130 gunships.
Gareth, e-mail, 29.03.2010 19:40
A follow up: Hopefully this information helps. 34th Squadron, 17th Bomb Group.
Chester Gasiorowski, e-mail, 19.03.2010 04:38
Looking for pictures of A26'S 119th utility squadron 1949 to 1854.
Chester A. Gasiorowski, e-mail, 19.03.2010 04:29
Hi I'm looking for info on my old squadron. The 119th fighter squadron out of Newark NJ. back in 1949 to 1954. Trying to find my old accident report when I crashed my P-51.
Robert E. Reynolds, e-mail, 02.03.2010 01:53
A damn fine aircraft. I flew 52 missions with the 17th BW, 34th BS as a gunner/observer from K-9 AFB, Pusan East in 1952. Also flew the B-26 Invader with the 452nd BW, 728th BS in the AF Reserves from Long Beach, CA until we became a Transport wing with C-46's and later C-119's in 1957.
Eddie Stough, e-mail, 23.02.2010 17:39
Engineer on the B-26 1949-1950 in the Alabama National Guard, Birmingham, Alabama. Loveed flying the ship.
cecil j. poss, 26.01.2010 19:18
I flew the B's and C's in the reserve at Dobbins Air Force Base. Also flew 50 missions in Korea as a night intruder pilot Great a/c! We kept all the lights out north of the bomb line in North Korea and also got cedit for two trains destroyed.
Gareth Fabor, e-mail, 19.01.2010 14:35
Sirs, does anyone know Kenneth P. Juhl? He was my grandfather. He was a test pilot for the b-25 and the a-26 over North Africa. If anyone you knew him (he has since passed), please e-mail me. I am looking for old pictures and flight logs. Thank you!
Ken Grace, e-mail, 09.01.2010 05:20
I worked on this aircraft in 1966 while stationed at England AFB with the 1st Air Commando Wing. We rotated these in and out of Vietnam. It was an honor to work on the engines of such an aircrft with such a great history.
Bill Arthur, e-mail, 01.01.2010 18:22
I went through advanced training in the B-26 but got stuck as a flight instructor in B-25s. Later flew the B-26 in Reserve at longbeach AFB. Shocked when they were replaced with C-45s and later C-119s. Loved flying the B-26, a great airplane, plenty of power and just plain fun to fly.
Jack L Brewer, e-mail, 08.10.2009 01:59
My father was Col. William C. Brewer he flew 45 Missions in this plane in Korea had many stories of his missions , said it was his favirot plane to fly, was a dream, he also had 25 missions in a B-17 WWII, Cold War B-52, Vietnam 26 missions B-52 Day Commander Utipio, did not loose a single crew member,
Proud Son of a SAC Commander , Jack
Ned, e-mail, 02.07.2009 03:51
I was a kid living on Clark AFB, Philippines in the mid-late 1950'S. I remember quite a few ex-French B-26s parked out-of-the-way while the USAF was deciding what to do with them. The aircraft had been returned to USAF control at the conclusion of French-Viet conflict.
Russ Kovach, e-mail, 26.09.2008 23:33
I was Crew Chief on B-26B 4139267 at Long Beach Municipal Airport (California) 1954-55. We had an array of B's and C's returned from Korea that reserve pilots kept up their flying time in.Also was crew member. Loved that plane that could be flown as a fighter .
Bill Query, e-mail, 30.08.2008 23:00
I flew the JD for 2 years at Gtmo in VU-10--1960/62. Also flew the FJ and F8 during that time. I enjoyed the JD---single pilot, fast and a challenge to make a good landing. Landed at the Coast Guard base in San Juan (3,000ft) at night---it took two tries and I still think it was a dumb mission for the senior types to send me on, especially as I had not landed at night before.
Thomas, e-mail, 14.08.2008 04:57
I was a metalsmith (AMH-2) in VU-2 at Quonset Point R.I. and worked on the JD'S ,FJ's and Drones. The Jig-dog was a good old plane and ez to work on. I also was a crew member and had a ball doing it. Yes sir, the good old day's.
Jack Brewer, e-mail, 22.07.2008 23:20
My Father Is a retired Col. (USAF) He flew 45 Missions 1950-51 Korea as pilot with two Navigators at night. His Assignment was to blow up anything that moved, stated it was the finest plane with Props the he ever flew, he received the Distinguished Flying Cross after Korea (He has 23,000 Hrs Behind the stick with the air force,WWII, Korea, SAC, Vietnam, His name is William C. Brewer, He is still flying at 85, He has told us at times he had up to 80 holes in this plane and it would still Fly, It also had a flat wing design for speed, For it's time it was quite possibly the best medium Bomer ever built.
Jim Warner, e-mail, 07.07.2008 17:50
I flew the JD-1 in Utility Squadron 2 out of NAS Quonset Point to tow targets for Destroyers out of Newport. It flew like a fighter. Also no co-pilot to make smart remarks.
Alex Brewer, Jr., e-mail, 14.06.2008 08:09
I flew 50 mission in the RB-26 Recon version of the B-26 during the Korean War. This was a very reliable airplane with good performance, even with an engine shot out. A B-26 dropped the first Bombs of the Korean War and also dropped the last Bombs. Later B-26s were modified and saw action in the Vietnam war. Lt/Col Alex Brewer, Jr. USAF (Ret)
george sobodos, e-mail, 27.05.2008 02:31
I was a gunner on this aircraft in 1944-45 and a profile veiw showing the peroscopic heads are very seldom shown.Why?
Dave Robinson, e-mail, 14.05.2008 02:50
The B-26 was also used to tow targets for army AAA out of George AFB and tracking for Nike sites.
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