Lady centenarian flies a Spitfire again....!!!

tac

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This is superb!' 100-year-old woman who flew spitfires during the Second World War celebrates her centenary by getting behind the controls again
Mary Ellis was in a select gang of female pilots who flew during World War II
She has now celebrated her 100th birthday by flying a plane over West Sussex
Mrs Ellis flew next to one of the Spitfires she was in more than 70 years ago

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As she sat on the airfield ready to deliver her first Spitfire, the mechanic standing on the wing asked how many of them she'd flown. When she said it was her first, he was so startled he fell right off. The largest aircraft she flew solo was the Wellington bomber. After landing at an East Anglian airfield, Mary was greeted by the ground crew who asked where the pilot was. 'I'm the pilot,' she said. They insisted on searching the aircraft before they believed her.
It was dangerous work. Mary was sometimes ordered to move combat-damaged planes that were not officially fit to fly, but had to be taken for repairs. She crash-landed twice and was shot at once.

Woman who flew spitfires during WWII celebrates her 100th | Daily Mail Online

tac
 
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My favorite memory of flying is when an ex-RAF Dakota pilot stopped by to watch us flying skydivers with an old C-47 (DC-3, or "Dakota" in RAF service) and struck up a conversation. He had dropped paratroopers at Normandy and Arnheim, delivered supplies on the drive to Germany, and mustered out after the war. He was called back to fly Dakotas in the Berlin Airlift before truly retiring, moved to Canada and was successful in business. In Canada he owned and flew a Piper Comanche, but had a heart attack and the government wouldn't let him fly anymore. He had not flown in 15 years.

We grabbed an emergency parachute (all occupants of a skydiving plane have to wear one) and took him up on the next flight. After dropping the skydivers, we put him in the right seat and had him fly the plane. He did great, even when we had him do tight turns and manuevers to lose altitude quickly (time is money in flying for hire) and he put the airplane just where we directed. My copilot volunteered to do the checklists from the jumpseat so our "Dakota Pilot" could stay in the right seat, and I talked him through entering the landing pattern, turning base, then final approach. All the while he was insisting that I take back the airplane, but he was doing so well I wouldn't. We set him up on final with a little power and he greased the airplane on with only the chirp of the tires to announce our touchdown. He tracked perfectly on rollout, and I only took back the airplane to manuever into a tight parking spot

That is when I realized that you can take flying away from a pilot, but you can't take the pilot out of a man (or woman).
 
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Very cool tac. Thanx for sharing. The Spitfire was a hell of an airplane. In my opinion, the best prop fighter plane the UK ever produced.
 

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