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  A68-199 First Flight since 1978  
  Dec 16 2016  
Congrats to Peter Gill for the restoration of A68-199 to flying condition. Last flown around 1978, she flew at the hands of Nick Caudwell with Peter Robinson as GIB on Dec 16 2016. Always a great day to have another P-51 airworthy!

  Robert A Hoover flies West early in the morning of 10/25/16  
  Oct 25 2016  
Every aviator knows the name "Bob Hoover". He left a permanent mark on many of us when we were young future pilots, as we watched his impressive antics in the Shrike Commander and the P-51 Mustang. "Best stick and rudder pilot ever", he has been called - and earned. Bob flew west early this morning, he was 94. His aviation career started as a teenager. He enlisted in the AAF in WWII. He was shot down, then escaped. He was test pilot. He revolutionized the airshow biz with his incredible flying in the Shrike Commander and the P-51 Mustang. He was the pace pilot for the unlimited class at the Reno Air Races for many years. Blue skies R.A. "Bob" Hoover.

  P-51 Buyer/Seller/Owner Mike Coutches Gone West at Age 92  
  Sep 10 2016  
One of the key people to fuel the civilian P-51 market in the late 1950's, Michael Coutches has gone west at age 92. Coutches ran his aircraft busines, American Aircraft Sales out of Hayward CA. They had recently moved it over the hill to Livermore. He bought surplus P-51s from McClellan AFB in Sacramento. He maintained, flew, upgraded and then sold them to civilian owners starting in the late 50's. Coutches has 2 P-51s in flying condition and a P-51H in the early stages of restoration. His son Steve has been doing the flying duties for many years.

Some of the P-51s he has owned: N2972D, he bought surplus from McClellan in September 1957. He also bought 45-11559 surplus from McClellan in December 1977 for $826! He owned yet to be Air Race Champion "Voodoo" in 1969. He also owned another Air Race Champion, "Dago Red" before it became such. The list goes on.

His flying P-51H, 44-64314, he purchased from William Hogan in 1966. His other P-51H, 44-64203, he kept at his home away form the public - only a few knew of it until the last 2 years when they published photos and info about it. Considered one of the civilian P-51 and warbird market pioneers in the late 50's, Michael Coutches of Hayward CA, Gone West Sep 10 2016. Condolences to his family and friends.

  P-51D 44-73990 First Post-Restoration New Look  
  May 18 2016  
The Henley's P-51D N51TH 44-73990 is now flying as 353rd FG "Alabama Rammer Jammer"

  N351BD Crashed - Maricopa AZ - 2 fatal  
  Feb 05 2016  
P-51 N351BD, 44-63634, Big Beautiful Doll, with pilot and passenger, crashed in Maricopa AZ about 35 mi south of Phoenix. Witnesses state the aircraft plunged straight into the ground exploding into flames. The aircraft is owned by Jeffrey Pino and based at Chandler AZ. Thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of Jeffrey Pino and Nick Tramontano.