October 24, 2017

Grumman Duck N63850 - One of a kind

Grumman Duck NL63850

One of only four flyable aircraft that survived America’s “Day of Infamy” is now based in East Texas alongside one of its fellow survivors. In 2017 the Mid America Flight Museum in Mount Pleasant, Texas acquired a rare Grumman J2F-4 Duck, Bureau Number 1649. 1649 is a very historic Grumman built Duck as it was on Pearl Harbor the day of the December 7th attack. It survived and went to serve in the South Pacific. After the war it made it to the U.S. civilian registry as N63850. Sadly, it crashed in the 1950s.

An ambitious enthusiast recovered the airframe of 1649 from its crash site on the bottom of a lake in the Bahamas. The restoration project was sold to aircraft collector Chuck Greenhill from Illinois. After a multi-year rebuilt with Wichita Air Services in Kansas 1649 flew again in 2005. It went on to earn the EAA Grand Champion Warbird award at Oshkosh in 2007. Mid America purchased the Duck from Mr. Greenhill.

Vintage airplane collector, Scott Glover, has built up the Mid America Flight Museum into a history preserving, flyable collection. His love for vintage aircraft is evident by his many hangars of amazing airplanes. His respect for veterans shows when he hosts events at his museum and gives rides to the veterans and their families. In the Fall of 2017 Mid America hosted a veteran’s event and owner, Scott Glover and pilot Kelly Mahon gave rides to many special guests in the newly acquired Duck.

--> Now that the Duck has been added to the museum, Mid America now has two flyable Pearl Harbor survivors. Ford Trimotor NC9612 was also on Pearl Harbor December 7, 1941.
Navy birds

My dad, son and I made the drive out to visit the airport during a World War Two pilot reunion in mid-October. The Duck was on our must see list so we sought it out and gave it a good walk around. Featured below are photos of Grumman Duck NL63850.

I believe this Duck to be one of a kind because of its Pearl Harbor history. Yes, other Duck's survive but none like this one. This one is on the same airport as a Ford Trimotor that was also on the island December 7th, 1941. Thank you to Mid America Flight Museum for saving and flying history!

Ford Trimotor NC9612

Links - Grumman Duck Video - Mid America Flight Museum

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