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Capital Wing Continues Restoration on BT-13

Brandy Station, VA (August 22, 2022) - At the CAF Capital Wing, members of the maintenance team have been busy over the past several months working on their growing fleet of assigned aircraft which include a TBM Avenger, L-5 Sentinel, UC-61 Forwarder, and BT-13. The most recent extensive project revolves around the BT-13. The work includes a freshly overhauled R-985 engine for the BT-13 and a very special tribute to a historic aviator and local hero.

This BT-13 is painted in the color scheme used at the Tuskegee Army Air Field in Alabama. They chose this livery to pay tribute to the men who were America’s first Black combat military pilots who trained at Tuskegee, specifically CAF Honorary Member, the late Brig. Gen. Charles McGee.

McGee, who lived in the community often visited the Wing. McGee earned his wings and commission as a 2nd Lieutenant on June 30, 1943, class 43-F. McGee was assigned to the 302nd Fighter Squadron. After 11 months, he had flown 136 fighter combat missions. McGee ended up serving in the military for 30 years. He became a command pilot with over 6,000 total flight hours, 1,151 of those in combat. He flew as a fighter pilot in three major military conflicts, completing 409 missions for the Army Air Corps and Air Force. He is one of the few fighter pilots who flew 100 or more combat missions in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. McGee passed away at his home in Bethesda, MD on January 16, 2022.

The Capital Wing continues to raise funds and work hard to have the BT-13 back in the air in 2023. The Capital Wing has self-funded $50,000 for the overhaul of the engine but there are still parts needed to continue the restoration. They are offering donors to the BT-13, a spot on a priority list to be among the first to purchase discounted rides in the aircraft.

To donate to the BT-13 restoration fund or find out more information visit www.capitalwingwarbirdrides.org/bt-13-valiant.

To keep up with the Capital Wing and this restoration project, follow them on Facebook at facebook.com/CAFCapWing.

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