Monday, July 23, 2012

The Memphis Belle in Buffalo

Your blogmeister headed out to Prior Aviation at KBUF this past Sunday morning specifically to see one particular airplane... unfortunately, the bird shown in these photos is not that particular airplane. The bird he really wanted to see, the Liberty Foundation's P-40, was apparently a no-show... but a B-17 with the name 'Memphis Belle' on its nose is better than nuthin' at all.

Now, before ya'll pile onto your blogmeister's back... he knows that a B-17 is nothing to scoff at. It's just that he's seen this particular Fort a bazillion times before, and has never seen the Liberty Foundation's P-40 up close and personal. So, being a P-40 nut, he was eager to have a second chance to get acquainted with this Hawk after having missed it the previous weekend at the Geneseo airshow, where it was also a no-show. You could say he was somewhat bummed... but, you play the hand dealt to you... so back to the B-17...

Yeah, yeah... we know... it's not the REAL 'Memphis Belle'. The real 'Belle' is undergoing a bit of dustin' and cleanin' at the Air Force Museum. But this-here Fort is still pretty groovy, even if it isn't a P-40. She's owned and operated by the Military Aircraft Restoration Corporation, which was formed by the late David Tallichet, and normally based at Geneseo, NY... home of the Historical Aircraft Group. She is currently being leased to the Liberty Foundation, and they're touring with the aircraft in lieu of their own B-17 which was destroyed in an unfortunate incident last year.

About the name of this B-17... although we at BuffaloWingz refer to it as the 'Memphis Belle', it is actually named 'The Movie Memphis Belle'. There's a whole long, tangled story about the name and we shall not go into it here, primarily because we don' have all the dope on that story. But we will say that it's a fitting name, because this Fort 'starred' as the 'Memphis Belle' in the 1990 film of the same name. We could also say more on that score, but shall refrain... lest we break a record for the longest blog post in history.

Anyhoo, here's a few snaps taken by your blogmeister this past Sunday morning... enjoy...

All photos: S.Donacik/BuffaloWingz

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