Arsenal of Democracy is spelled with three Ps
By Robert F. Dorr
Preparedness and professionalism saved the day when a mishap occurred during the Arsenal of Democracy Flyover (click HERE for the media coverage). Those of us who belong to the National Capitol Squadron (NCS) believe that being ready was the key but there was a third "P" that had a role: it was providential that a graduate of our Youth Maintenance Program was on the scene to help.
During the Flyover, the Fighter Factory TBM Avenger developed a hydraulic line rupture and diverted to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. Not by chance, everyone involved in the Flyover, beginning with TBM pilot Joshua Wilson, responded with calm professionalism. The Commemorative Air Force and other participants always give first priority to safety but for emphasis NCS member Mike Ginter, operations officer for the Flyover, stressed safety repeatedly during briefings in the weeks-long preparations for the big event. The TBM landed safely and without incident.
In addition to restoring and flying World War II aircraft, NCS operates an award-winning program to bring young Americans into the world of aircraft maintenance. It happened by chance that Brian Snead, a graduate of the NCS Youth Maintenance Program, was at National Airport and was able to pitch in and help. Within six hours of declaring an in-flight emergency, the TBM was back at its intended destination with an unscheduled passenger on board—NCS's alumnus, Brian , who assisted in returning the torpedo bomber to flight.
"Our success in assisting with this emergency is testimony to the hard work and devotion of many people," said NCS unit leader Dan Haug. "We're pleased that our squadron could play a small part."
For more information about the National Capitol Squadron visit www.nationalcapitolsquadron.org