BuNo 88297

Current Civil Registration Number G-FG1D

BuNo 88297 was one of the very few surviving Corsairs to actually arrive in the Pacific theatre before the end of World War II.  It was assigned to the Marine Air Wing 2 (MAW-2) aircraft pool on Guam from June 1945 and remained on strength there through the final two months of the war.  It later returned to the United States and served with a number of Reserve squadrons until being stricken from active duty.

Famed Hollywood aviator Frank Tallman was responsible for saving BuNo 88297 from the salvagers in 1960 and relocating it to Santa Ana, CA as part of the Tallmantz warbird collection.  It was sold in 1967 to Johan Larsen of Minneapolis, MN who maintained the fighter until 1978 when it was passed on to new owner Louis Antonacci from Hampshire, Illinois.

Antonacci repainted the Corsair in the colors of VF-17 triple-ace Lt. Ira Kepford and maintained a fairly high profile on the air show circuit for the next four years before it was grounded for overhaul.

In 1986, BuNo 88297 was purchased by UK based collector Stephen Grey and summarily shipped overseas where it became the latest addition to his Duxford, England based “The Fighter Collection”.  In 1997, Grey had his Corsair repainted in its current colors as ‘KD345’ of the Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm - 1850 Squadron, and it continues to operate as such to this day.

 

BUNo 88297 - Jim Sullivan Collection BUNo 88297 - Jim Sullivan Collection BUNo 88297 - Jim Sullivan Collection
BUNo 88297 - Doug Fisher BUNo 88297 -Jim Sullivan Collection
BUNo 88297 - Mark Morris BUNo 88297 - Doug Fisher BUNo 88297 - Doug Fisher

BuNo 88297