Fort Worth, Texas
The P-51 Mustang is a vintage World War II aircraft that had a maximum speed of 444 miles per hour and could reach an altitude of 42,000 feet. It had 6 wing-mounted machine guns and could carry two 500-pound bombs or even a pair of three-shot rocket launchers, making the Mustang a very flexible foe.
By the end of WWII more than 13,000 P-51D Mustangs had been produced, all with the resonant, supercharged Packard-Merlin engine. The U.S. and Great Britain continued to use the plane after the war, and the Americans took Mustangs into battle in Korea before retiring them in the 1950s. Today there are fewer than 250 of the planes left, and most of those are museum exhibits.
This particular P-51 named “Pecos Bill” was part of a fleet of Freedom Flyers established by Cowden Ward to honor veterans with flights in this vintage aircraft. Tragically, Ward and his honored passenger, a WWII B-17 Pilot, died in an air show plane crash in Fredericksburg, Texas in November, 2018.
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