Oshkosh 2016-Day Three - Pearl Harbour 75th Anniversary
By Juri Keyter and Willie Bodenstein
Day three at Oshkosh is one of the days that people flock too. The afternoon airshow almost always celebrates the military followed by the spectacular evening air show and fireworks display.
This year the weather unfortunately intervened with high gusting winds and a rain storm disrupted the start of proceedings. However, the weather cleared, although it remained overcast for most of the rest of the day, a welcome relief from the extremely hot temperatures of the previous day.
The show, though, must go on and it did. One of the highlights of the afternoon was the much anticipated arrival of the Canadian Snow Birds. The Snow Birds last performed at AirVenture in the early seventies and will be doing two performances later this week.
The arrival of the Snow Birds
Canadian Harvard Aerobatic Team
Some of the afternoons other performers were:
Gene Soucy and Amanda Stokes in the Grumman Showcat
Kent Pietsch doing the truck top landing
And showing that the seventy year old Interstate Cadet can, if the power is managed properly, be a pretty good glider.
The highlight of the day for us was the Texas Flying Legends. Because of the earlier inclement weather their enactment was shorter than those of previous years. None the less the sky was filled with smoke, explosions whilst the sound of radials filled the sky and that kept the myriads glued to their spots.
The Aircraft of the Texas Heritage Flight
The USAF this year supported AirVenture with a number of its aircraft from its current fleet including an F-16 Fighting Falcon and amongst others two F-18 Hornets.
F-16 Fighting Falcon
Right after the afternoon show, Radio Honolulu started playing over the public address system and we were back in 1941. We were still enjoying the brass bands and the swing when the Japanese Zeros attacked us from behind and the re-enactment of this fateful day started. With explosions everywhere, smoke making it very difficult to see further than 200 meters, Zeros, a P40 and a B17 flying continuously through the smoke in both directions, left us breathless. This was the most thrilling and entertaining display we have ever seen.