BuNo 92509

Current Civil Registration Number N3PP

Other than a one year stint with VMAT-20 squadron at MCAS Cherry Point, NC (January 1952 – February 1953), BuNo 92509 spent its entire active service years bouncing between various Naval Reserve Squadrons.  In 1959 it was disposed of as surplus to Alu-Met Smelting Company where it was set aside for potential resale as a flyer.

Around 1960, Malcolm Miller of Carpenteria, CA purchased BuNo 92509 and over the next six years it sat relatively untouched before being purchased by David Sica of Sylmar, CA.  Sica reportedly performed some minimal refurbishment on the plane, but it did not fly until after it was acquired by John Van Andel of Stanford, Connecticut in 1971.

Van Andel had the fighter refinished in a spurious tri-tone color scheme as #86 and operated the plane regularly on the air show circuit from 1971-76

In 1976 it was purchased by its current owner Preston Parish of Kalamazoo, Michigan and included as part of his Kalamazoo Aviation History Museum (unofficially referred to as the “Kalamazoo Air Zoo”).  The Corsair immediately became the subject of an intense and thorough four-year restoration and emerged in 1980 in pristine stock configuration, setting the standard at the time for what would become the popular trend for restorations in decades to come.  It was awarded the Grand Champion Warbird award at the EAA air show in Oshkosh, WI in 1980 and continued to operate regularly with the museum over the next two decades. It was often times a featured 'Flight of the Day' performer at the Air Zoo, whereby a flight is performed each day for museum visitors by various aircraft, the plane is also an almost perennial performer at Oshkosh in the late 1990's but the rise in operational costs grounded the entire fleet around 2000. Today BuNo 92509 remains one of the cornerstones of the Air Zoo's static collection.

Buno 92509 NAS Sand Point, WA c.1952 - Jim Sullivan Collection
Buno 92509 - Jim Sullivan Collection Buno 92509 - Jim Sullivan Collection Buno 92509 - Jim Sullivan Collection
BuNo 92509 - Jim Sullivan Collection BuNo 92509 - Jim Sullivan Collection BuNo 92509 - Jim Sullivan Collection
BuNo 92509 - Jim Sullivan Collection BuNo 92509 - Jim Sullivan Collection BuNo 92509 - Jim Sullivan
BuNo 92509 OshKosh 99 - Mike Schneider Buno 92509 OshKosh 99 - Mike Schneider Buno 92509 - Jim Church

 

BuNo 92509