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The Extraordinary Life of Sandy Sansing Remembered

virgal sandyCAF Col Virgil “Sandy” Sansing passed away Mon., June 30, 2014 in his hometown of New Braunfels, Texas. Sansing was a longtime member of the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) and a unit member of the Central Texas Wing. He flew several different aircraft for the CAF including the T-6, P-39, Kate and Zero with Tora! Tora! Tora!. Sansing is a decorated World War II Veteran. On June 20, 1944 at the age of 22, he was shot down while flying a P-51 Mustang and strafing an enemy train. He parachuted out of the aircraft and arrived safely on the ground. Sandy Sansing immediately went into hiding in the French countryside. For the next few months he was assisted by French families and members of the French Resistance, which helped him reach his base in England. For 61 years Sansing had a deep appreciation for the members of the French Resistance for saving him and helping him get back home.

In April 2005, the CAF French Wing contacted the Mayor of Puiseux, Patrick Tricoche, to report that the Texan pilot which landed in his town during World War II is alive and wants to come to the scene of his parachute landing. City Council Puiseux was thrilled at the idea and decided to invite him to the village feast. For his heroism he was elevated to the rank of Knight of the Legion of Honor. The decoration was presented to him at the Museum of Air and Space at Le Bourget (Seine-Saint-Denis) by General Air, Patrick Marbach. In 2006 Sansing was inducted into the CAF American Combat Airman Hall of Fame.

Click here to see his ACAHOF plaque.

A Memorial Service will be held at the Central Texas Wing hangar on Sat., July 26 at 10 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested donations be sent to: 

CAF Centex Wing, 1841 Airport Drive, San Marcos, TX 78666.

Checks should be made out to the Central Texas Wing with "Sandy Sansing" written on the memo line.

Questions should be addressed to the Central Texas Wing at 512-396-1943.

Alaska Wing Helps CAP Cadets Take Flight

cadetsThe CAF Alaska Wing may only have a handful of members, but they certainly know how to make an impact with their local community. The Wing participates in several events each year from Formation Flying Days to Memorial Fly-in, and the upcoming Arctic Thunder 2014. This year the Wing started working with the Kenai Civil Air Patrol and took five young cadets in a World War II AT6 (Advanced Trainer) for a ride of a lifetime.  The cadets were each given a chance to take a flight. For some it was the first time in a warbird. In addition to the ride, the cadets recieved information about the mechanics of flight and learned about the history of the aircraft.

Working with the Civil Air Patrol not only brings more people and awareness to the Wing, but it opens up new horizons for the cadets. Many of the cadets who join the Civil Air Patrol hope to learn how to fly to some day get a private or commercial pilot license. Getting to fly in a World War II aircraft makes for a memorable experience and hopefully will encourge these young pilot hopefulls to keep following their passion.

Members of the CAF Alaska Wing hope to continue programs and partnerships like this in their community to help their museum grow and allow others to have similar experience with their historic warbirds.

For more information about the cadets, click here.

For information about the CAF Alaska Wing, click here.


Headed to Oshkosh? Want a fuel discount?

Tuesday2Some of you lucky Colonels will soon make the annual pilgrimage to Oshkosh, Wis. for EAA AirVenture. While the trip is well worth it, it can be very expensive, especially if you didn't book your hotel room three years ago. However, there are some great fuel savings available. Please check out the link below to for some outstanding discounts offered around the U.S. 

Should you find yourself needing to stop in Ohio, The FBO in Marysville,Ohio (KMRT) airport just Northwest of Columbus, Ohio is offering some great deals as well. From July 9 - Aug. 16. PrimeAero will be offering full service fuel sales at self-service prices. The PrimeAero Group is well aware of the special needs of warbirds (Jim Hagedorn regulary flies in/out of there with his P-51 Old Crow). In addition, we have heard that hangar space may be available should anyone run into weather problems and need a place to drop into. Not only that, but if you mention promo code KPK to get this fuel deal a donation will be made to the local ballon festival, which annually hosts several warbirds and benefits the United Way. Win-Win-Win!




This year CAF Headquarters will not be bringing Hangar 57 (sigh), but we are certain the CAF members and CAF aircraft attending will be a tremendous attraction at the show. Please share your highlights and pictures with us. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , or tag Commemorative Air Force on Facebook.

As a reminder, the CAF Creative Staff is always looking for news, stories, event information and photos to share with the members and warbird enthusiasts around the world, feel free to send us an email with information or a request for more information on what interest you.



Click here for the link to GlobalAir for fuel savings.
Click here for the link to PrimeAero the FBO at KMRT.







Thank you CAF Col Mo Aguiari  and CAF Col Kevin Korterud for sending in the information about the discounts!

Atlanta Warbird Weekend Sets Stage for Photography Mini-workshop

B-17As if the upcoming Atalanta Warbird Weekend wasn't already exciting enough, 3G Aviation Media will be hosting a photography mini-workshop for aviation and warbird enthusiests, photographers looking to improve their techniques, and the general public. With the success of their first photography workshop earlier this year, the group decided to do a half-day workshop to focus on giving the public a unique opportunity to photograph World War II aircraft while learning techniques of the trade. The workshop will take place after the sun sets to experiement with different types of lighting, provided by 3G Aviation Media.

One of the planes in attendance during Atlanta's Warbird weekend will be the Airbase Arizona's B-17, Sentimental Journey.  She will be making a guest appearance as one of the photo subjects because her polished metal exterior will make for a beautiful subject for the sunset and twilight photo opportunities. 

The instructors of 3G Aviation Media will conduct a mixture of classroom presentations with hands-on experience and group interaction during the workshop to give the attendees. The event will be help on Sept 27. For more information or to register, click here. 

Photo courtesy of Kevin Hong

2014 Wings Over Camarillo Air Show

airshow camarilloAugust is Airshow month at the Southern California Wing in Camarillo,Calif. Upwards of 15,000 people come out for the two-day Wings Over Camarillo Air Show. This year the show will take place the weekend of Aug. 23-24 at the wing’s facilities at Camarillo Airport.

Each year, volunteers from the Southern California Wing, EAA Chapter 723 and the Ventura County Ninety-Nines team up with the Wings Over Camarillo, the non-profit organization which sponsors the event,  to stage two full days of fun and entertainment for the whole family. 

This year, Chuck Aaron, one of the few pilots in the world to fly the Red Bull Helicopter upside down, will be joined by national air racing veteran and aerobatic pilot Vicky Benzing along with about 60 other pilots in flying demonstrations of a variety of World War II, civilian, experimental and historical aircraft during the four-and-a half hour Air Show.  These include single aircraft demonstrations and aerobatic flying, formation flying, high speed runs down the fly zone, aircraft taxing in front of you into taxi way parking spots, and vivid descriptions over the PA system and history of the flying aircraft and their pilots at Camarillo Airport.

Many of the CAF So Cal Wing’s 12 aircraft will be flying both days, along with being on static display in our ramp area.  This includes the North American P-51D Mustang Man of War, Grumman F8F Bearcat, Grumman F6F-5 Hellcat, Supermarine Spitfire MKI.XIV, A6M3 Zero, North American SNJ-4 and SNJ-5 Texan advanced trainers; Fairchild PT-19 Primary Trainer.  On static display will be a Curtiss C-46 transport China Doll and the North American B-25J/PBJ Mitchell Bomber currently in restoration.

Other participating flying 60 to 70 year old aircraft are on static display too from 9 a.m. untill Noon, the start of the airshow.  The early hours give show patrons an opportunity to walk up close to the aircraft, get a feel of that history, talk to the pilots who flew these aircraft in the 1940s and 1950s and talk to the pilots who fly the aircraft today and their ground crews.  There is also entertainment, food booths, a variety of merchandise vendors and sizeable classic car exhibits.

In the middle of all the action, guests are invited to the Legends and Heros tent to visit with war veterans, real heroes from different wars. Each year the show is honored to host veterans wanting to share their first hand experiences with others. Those with children are encourged to take advantage of this unique oppurtunity to make a personal connection the ones who did the work that led to Americas sucess and preserved our freedom. No matter your age, come by and  learn why we are all in debt to those who fought for us and why American Military Aviation changed all our lives.

Gates are open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.   

Advance Internet Tickets are on sale at

Military discounts are available. 

Air Show gate admission is $15 for adults, and children under 12 are free. 


Photo taken by CAF Col Sheryl O-Neil

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