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VE Day: 92-year-old Second World War veteran flies Spitfire for first time in 70 years

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A 92-year-old Second World War veteran has flown a Spitfire aircraft for the first time in 70 years to mark VE Day. Obviously a tough lady. Posted to make Wayne feel young. (www.independent.co.uk) Altro...

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LoralThomas
I love stories like this. You go, gal! Gotta think the pilot that flew with her on this flight got as much joy and reward as she did.
rad2
EXCELLENT!!! Just what our youngsters need, a short, but good look at history.
canuck44
canuck44 16
Agree, Roger...you know she has more guts now at 92 than most of our overwrought, feminized, politically correct youth. I would love to have known her in 1943 and many of the women who ferried aircraft across the Atlantic via Newfoundland and Greenland following a single aircraft with navigation like ducklings following a mother. Brave is an understatement.
LoralThomas
These were the times of real pilots -- not somebody sitting in a seat pushing all kinds of dials and buttons, watching the plane fly and land itself. Pretty soon the requirement for a pilot's license will include a degree in computer technology!! Sad.
waypoint66
David Rice 4
Oh yea, cheers to that brave lady and her accomplishments during and since her participation in WWII!
waypoint66
David Rice 2
"...will include a degree in computer technology!! Sad."
Really? Sad? The explosion of technology available to the GA pilot has brought with it huge advances in safety and convenience. As far as "...sitting in a seat pushing all kinds of dials and buttons..." goes, this is not now, nor will it soon be the reality of flying for someone with just a "pilot's license" (the GA pilot). I for one am very happy that the pilots I know who are beyond the training level of the GA pilot, know how to operate "computer technology". There's nothing "Sad" about this situation. Long live advances in technology!
LoralThomas
Huge advances in safety and convenience. As a flight instructor, I see actual pilot skills declining. As Preacher posted some time ago on another thread, technology is there to assist the pilot. He/she still needs good old stick and rudder ability.

Don't misunderstand my earlier post, David. I'm all in favor of ADSB but reprogramming your GPS with the revised clearance ATC just gave you while in IFR with turbulence can lead to trouble, especially if the turbulence is sufficient enough that you cannot use your a/p. Think NTSB uses the phrase "failure of the pilot to maintain control of the aircraft." Today's technology makes a good argument for having 2 in the cockpit -- one to fly the aircraft and the other to turn the dials.
oowmmr
oowmmr 8
It did bring back her youth in her expression and exhilaration.
mdbrown
As an avid pilot and aviation enthusiast it was a treat to view this story and offer my appreciation for this young lady to be able to get back in the seat. Thank you for your story and your service to our country.
sparkie624
sparkie624 4
I love these kind of articles.... Brings back a little humanity and a view of history.
patpylot
bless this sweet lady, but I can not help but think she might have wished to exercise the Spit a bit by tearing some holes in the sky at a much higher speed. Turns, banks, climbs, descents- this airplane is a performer, not a 158 mph tourist bird, flying at 500 feet. I would be so happy to buy her any drink she would want, and ask her some flying questions.
bentwing60
bentwing60 5
Touche JD and to the fair haired Co Captain of the Spitfire. Cool
garethmt
I'd recommend a look at a book by R E Gilman called "Croydon to Concorde"; the guy flew in the war, then became a civil pilot and a test pilot for flight magazine, he said much the same thing about being worried if modern pilots will understand as much of the fundamentals as the "manual" pilots did.
rocketrod
I have a 90+ next door neighbour who was an Army Air Corps glider pilot in thw war. He still flies gliders (with a co-pilot) everyweek. Great guy still very agile.
rdgc
all the flying that she and those around her did in those days was really hands on, whereas many commercial pilots these days do their great loss do mostly autop[ilot and simulator, a total lack of stick and rudder experience. They were the real pilots
colinrasmussen
not a commercial pilot are you
Patster
Great news clip.
Nice to see something this interesting. Looks like She will make a centenary flight!
Good luck to you Joy!
jjsifo
One very special lady !
rockyaj1
Great story. It wonderfull that you'll still remember the greatest generation. Those pilots were a special breed. My father was a P-51 Mustang pilot, Capt. Joe H. Joiner, during WWll. He was stationed in Dedbin England for a year before DDay and flew on DDay also. A few years ago he and his roommate form the 336 Squadron in Dedbin Don Perini flew a pair of P-51s. It was a great experience for the two of them as well. God bless the Vets.

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