This has absolutely nothing to do with hunting, fishing or conservation news, but if you don’t think this is cool, then you don’t have a pulse. And if you are (like I am, and I’m sure many of you) a WWII aviation and history buff, then it’s beyond cool. Twenty brand-new, still-in-the-box British Spitfires that were buried in Burma at the end of WWII and promptly forgotten, have been found.
From this story on aviationpros.com:
Twenty Spitfire fighter aircraft buried in Myanmar during World War II are to be dug up and shipped back to Britain, officials say. The planes will be returned to Britain as a result of intervention by British Prime Minister David Cameron, The Daily Telegraph reported. The planes had been buried more than 40 feet beneath the ground for nearly 67 years because of fears of Japanese occupation.
…David Cundall, 62, a farmer from Scunthorpe, North Lincs, located the planes at a former Royal Air Force base using radar-imaging technology after a 15-year search that cost him more than $207,000 and involved 12 trips to Myanmar.
Wow. Many aviation buffs consider the Spitfire the most beautiful airplane of the WWII era and one of the most beautiful machines ever made, but like most military planes of that era, out of the thousands and thousands produced during the war, only about 35 are still flying. For the equally interesting backstory on the the amateur plane buff who tracked the planes down, here’s a cool story in the UK Telegraph.
So this begs the question: what is your favorite WWII-era airplane? For me, as much as I love the Spitfire, I’d have to say my personal favorite has always been the Vought F4U Corsair. No, it can’t compete with the Spitfire for sheer elegance and beauty, but for a history-obsessed kid growing up in the 70s, hanging on each episode of Baa Baa Black Sheep every week, the Corsair with its menacing midnight blue paint and awesome inverted gullwings was — to use the patois — the shizzle.