The Incident at Phoenix


Introduction:  The Incident at Phoenix

In March of 1997, an unusual event occurred in the night skies of Arizona which have been dubbed the Phoenix Lights or the Incident at Phoenix. This mystery actually started in Southern Nevada over the town of Henderson, NV.Then reports of strange lights over the Arizona towns of Paulden, Prescott, Prescott Valley, Dewey, and Phoenix.

In all cases, the lights appeared to be in a “V” formation. with some variations in shape. The lights seem to be connected to a solid object as the stars were blocked out as it passed overhead. In nearly all observations the “object” was

  1.  Low altitude, possibly 1,000 feet or lower.
  2.  Absolutely no sound or noise.
  3.  Moving at a speed so slow that no aircraft could stay in the air at that speed.
  4.  Then accelerate to unknown speeds.

Flying Triangle


The first sighting in Henderson NV was reported at 1955 (7:55 PM) as the object progressed on a Northwest to Southeast (with an occasional variation) until it was over Phoenix at about 2015 (8:15 PM)

When the number of calls to “911”, newspapers, radio stations,  Arizona and Federal Government offices (that were open at that hour) was added up it came to an astonishing over 10,000 callers. This count could be higher because there may have been many who didn’t report what they saw to anyone, because of possible ridicule. and not knowing whom to call,

Fife Symington was Arizona Governor at the time, also witnessed the event at a nearby park. The Governor would later hold a Press Conference and ridicule and mock the event to the ire of many witnesses. Later Governor Symington would apologize at a Conference at the Press Club in Washington DC.

In fact, he criticized public officials who would “run and hide” instead of admitting they didn’t know what this event or any unusual happening was.

So often career advancement does not allow an ambitious government official to be involved in any way in anything “outside-the-box”.

One has to applaud Governor Symington for admitting what he saw and admitting that he handled the situation in a wrong manner at first.

Most witnesses said what they saw was usually 5 lights in a “V” formatting, very low to the ground, very slow in speed perhaps as slow as 30-40 mph, and absolutely no noise at all.

The time of this event was from 20:15-20:40 hours (8:15-8:40 PM), depending on what part of the Valley where you were when you saw the object. Then the “object” continued Southeast and accelerated to speeds unknown.


The second event of the “The Phoenix Lights” occurred around 2200 (1000 PM) to the southwest part of the city. There were several “home videos” taken of this event. This event appeared to be different in the fact that several lights (more than 5) came on one by one. The Air Force said they were dropping flares over the Goldwater Practice Range at that time.

After viewing the videos, many said that if they were flares, there would be some change in there (flares) position in the formation, but the lights remained perfectly straight information.  Although the winds aloft at that altitude were light, the “flares” would have moved a little even in light winds.

Also, flares leave a smoke trail from the burning phosphorus, there was no indication of this in the videos. In addition, the parachutes would illuminate from the flare, even a small amount, but there was no indication of any parachute illumination.

The lights of this Event Two last several minutes, 5-10 minutes as it is estimated. Just as they came on (9-10 lights), they went out one by one. Thus ended this very unusual evening activity.

UFO #02


Besides the “main events” in Phoenix. The “triangle” was seen in Tucson as a “battleship gray” color. This event occurred about 2100 hrs (9:00 PM) and lasted for just a few minutes and was witnessed by a handful of people.

Later that evening, strange cluster of “stars” was reported in Kingman AZ


While this event remains a mystery today. Some of the things this event was not:

Low or High flying aircraft

If it were low flying aircraft or helicopters, they would make noise.  That is what was so unusual about the sightings was there was absolutely –NO NOISE. There was an explanation given by an ex-Air Force officer that the first event was 6 /A-10s flying at 15,000 feet traveling from Nellis AFB Las Vegas to Davis-Monthan AFB Tucson AZ.

I live about 25 miles from Davis-Monthan AFB and there are many A-10s stationed there.   Quite regularly A-10s fly over our house at alludes at 10,000 feet and higher.   While that is pretty high there is no question about hearing engine whine even if it is not too loud. The Lights Over Phoenix were reported as very low.  So we can rule out any type of known aircraft.

Mass Hallucination

Since there were at least 10,00 reports of eyewitnesses to the event, we can dismiss that possibility.

Experimental Aircraft

I have never heard of the United States Governmental flying experimental aircraft over populated areas. Sure Area 51 lies to the northwest and the mysterious object could have come from that direction

The fact is the government wants their experiments to be “unnoticed” and kept secret rather than plastered across the news media. So we can rule out Experimental Aircraft.

 Alien Spaceships from Alpha Centaur (or elsewhere)

There are several individuals from the Phoenix area and elsewhere too, that think that we were visited by “aliens” I am leaving that explanation to you, the reader,  to determine if you think that is true.


Do we have the capability to produce holographs that could fool thousands of people?  That might be an experiment that the government might consider to see how it would work on a populous area (if we had the technology). If this worked we would have an enemy chasing after tanks and aircraft there were mere images.

Finally, do I have a definitive explanation for “The Incident at  Phoenix”? I am sorry but I am with the thousands throughout the world who regard this as a great unsolved mystery.

March 13, 1997, was indeed an interesting night for the residents of Arizona.



What Happened at Roswell 1947

UFO #03Introduction: What Happened at Roswell 1947

On a stormy evening on 02 July 1947, a controversial event took place near Roswell New Mexico. William “Mac” Brazel,  who was a foreman on the Foster cattle ranch when this event occurred, was waiting out the storm that night.

This was nothing new as the “monsoons” (thunderstorm season) were in full swing. The next day Mac went out to check the pastures to see where the most rain had fallen as he would then move the herd into the best pasture for feeding.

In those days (the 1940’s) it was common to move around the countryside on a horse. As Mac rode into one pasture he noticed it was littered with the debris of a substance that was not familiar to him.

This metallic material was unlike anything that he had ever seen. It was very light much like our present day aluminum foil but extremely strong and would pop back into its original shape if you crumpled it up.

You couldn’t cut or burn it, it seemed indestructible. There were also small solid girders that had strange hieroglyphics printed or embossed them. They too seemed to be very strong.

These pieces of aluminum-like foil were scattered over an area of several hundred yards like something had crashed or crash-landed there.

Roswell #03

Mac was a rancher, not an aviator, but he did feel compelled to tell someone of authority about this. He contacted Sheriff Wilcox in Roswell on 07 July 1947. The Sheriff’s office didn’t have any clue as to what this “crash or crash landing” was, as there were no reports of any civil aircraft missing.

About 2 weeks earlier, the infamous story about Kenneth Arnold seeing a flight of strange aircraft traveling at a very high speed near Mt. Rainer in Washington state.  Arnold said they looked like saucers skipping on a pond.

The media then dubbed the phrase “flying saucers”. Flying Saucer mania swept the country. So when Brazel spoke with Sheriff Wilcox, Mac asked if this might be one of those “Flying Saucers” that was scattered over the Foster Ranch? Mac wasn’t sure what it was.

When asked when he found the material, account #1 Brazel said he first noticed it around mid-July (he wasn’t sure of the exact date). He collected some of it and hide it under some sagebrush on the ranch.

Account #2 states it was the morning of 03 July 1947 when he first noticed the material. So when Mac contacted Sheriff Wilcox, they both went out to the ranch to have a look together. Sheriff Wilcox thought it best to contact the Army at Roswell AAF base.

So Wilcox then contacted Major Jesse Marcel at the 509 Bomb Group at Roswell Army Air Force Base (the Air Force branch of the military had not yet been formed). Maj. Marcel accompanied Brazel back to the ranch to inspect the debris.

Maj. Marcel reported his findings to his superior. Then up the chain of command to Colonel William Blanchard, the Base Commander of the 509th at RAAF at Roswell.

Roswell #1

That day 07 July, the Public Information Officer Walter Haut released the “infamous” story about how the Army had captured and recovered a “flying disc”. The story was picked up by the major news sources in the country and a sensational wave of excitement broke out.

However, Col Blanchard’s boss General Roger Rainey released a news release that the debris was a weather balloon that had got caught in a storm. No saucer.

In the next 30 years, the story was dead. Then in 1978 Stanton Friedman interviewed Jesse Marcel, one of the few survivors of the original event and investigator of the event. Jesse claims that there was a lot more to the “event” that was originally reported. He said that the Army knew that an alien spaceship had crashed on the Foster Ranch so many years ago.

The legend grew larger as more folks entered the “fray”. In the next 15-20 years, many books were written about alien bodies (someone even said there was a live alien at Wright-Patterson AFB in Dayton, OH.)

By now with over “300 witnesses” according to some sources, it was said that the U.S. government was covering up what “really” happened, that is, that an alien spaceship had crashed at Roswell and the military/government knew all about it and they were covering up the truth from the public.

Many of these writers demanded that the truth be released to the public. (It is kind of hard to release something you don’t have.)

mogul balloon

In 1994 the Air Force released a finding of a now de-classified project called Operation Mogul. Operation Mogul was a Top-Secret operation that launched high altitude balloons. In 1947, we did not have satellites of any kind, as that wouldn’t come until the late 50’s.

The United States military didn’t have any high flying spy airplanes at that time, again not until the 50’s. So what was Operation Mogul all about? The Soviets had just developed the atomic bomb but the U.S. government didn’t have much data on how far along they were in development or how well these weapons worked.

The idea comes along that if you could send some atomic testing equipment aloft, to 100,000 feet or so at that altitude you could determine how often and what strength and when these weapons were tested.

The Army modified their existing weather balloons to carry the heavy lift of the test instruments. In those days, radios and other scientific equipment was large, bulky and heavy.   Miniaturization was years off, not until the Apollo moon missions took place.

The modified high altitude balloons used materials that were generally not available to the public. These had to be light and strong to withstand the turbulence and winds aloft. Thus Operation Mogul was born.

Op Mogul

Like I mentioned in the beginning, the “monsoons“ or thunderstorms were active that night. Now think this out, if you were from another star system and had developed a space vehicle that could travel hundreds or perhaps thousands of light years in a very short time wouldn’t you be able to navigate around Earth’s puny little meteorological events.

However, an unmanned high altitude balloon on it’s way up to high altitudes might not be so fortunate. This I believe is what Mac Brazel found on the Foster Ranch that morning. But this is not a very exciting proclamation like a crashed saucer from beyond the stars.

The story was a financial boon for a good many writers, Hollywood, and Roswell itself.

Now it is up to You-the reader to form your own opinion on what happened in Roswell in 1947. Will it be following a legend like Paul Bunyan and his Ox Blue or coming to the conclusion that is was a far less romantic adventure like Operation Mogul.


Lockheed F-104 Starfighter


The F-104 Starfighter was built by Lockheed as a single supersonic interceptor fighter and fighter-bomber originally for the United States Air Force (USAF).  More than a dozen allied air forces of the world purchased this aircraft from Lockheed as 2,578 were built.

This first flight was on 17 February 1956 and the first Starfighter went on-line on 20 February 1958. One of the “Century Series” of fighter aircraft was designed by a Lockheed team led by Clarence “Kelly” Johnson who helped develop such Lockheed famous aircraft such as the civilian Constellation, the military P-38 Lighting,  Electra 10A, C-130 Hercules and many other well-known aircraft.

Later Kelly Johnson, the chief engineer at “Skunk Works”,  played a major part in developing a highly classified place called “Area 51” which has been used in the past (maybe the future) for testing of new, classified aircraft and other military gear.

The F-104 would set numerous speed and altitude records.  Several variants were produced for Canada,  Italy, and other nations.

The Starfighter advancement among nations was marred by a bribery scandal involving Lockheed and serval countries in Europe and Japan.  This tainted the image of Lockheed’s management.  The F-104 itself seemed to weather the storm as it was sold to many European and Asian countries.

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F-100 Super Sabre Jet by North American


The F-100 also called the Super Sabre Jet was built by North American Aviation. This aircraft was called the first of the “Century Series” of jet fighters that served in the United States Ari Force (USAF) from 1964-1971. The F-100 was a follow-on to the North American F-86 Sabre Jet with higher performance. It flew as a close air support aircraft in the Vietnam War. It also was used, besides USAF, the Turkish Air Force, Republic of China Air Force, French Air Force.

There were 2, 294 Super Sabres produced between 1953-1959 by North American Aviation. The nickname was the “Hun” for F-100.

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Lockheed C-130 Hercules

Lockheed C-130 Hercules



The C-130 Hercules is a four-engine turbo-prop built by the Lockheed Aircraft as a Cargo/Troop transport aircraft. Besides the basic role of hauling cargo and troops, it was used as a medevac, gunship, airborne assault, search and rescue, weather recon, aerial refueling, maritime patrol, aerial firefighting and a tactical military aircraft.

There have been more than 40 variants built since the early 1950s and is currently still being produced by now Lockheed-Martin. There have been over 2,500 C-130 Hercules of all varieties built. Nearly every country in the world has a C-130 for many purposes. There is a civilian version called Lockheed L-100 being used in over 60 nations.

The United States Air Force (USAF) was the first to receive a C-130 Hercules in 1954. Since then the United States Navy (USN), The United States Marine Corps (USMC), Royal Netherlands AirForce, Royal Australian Air Force, and Royal Air Force (RAF) have purchased the Lockheed C-130 Hercules just to name a few users.

Design and Development

The Korean War which began in 1950 and with a peace armistice (no peace treaty has ever been signed) in 1953 showed that the piston driven transports of World War II, the Fairchild C-119 Flying Boxcar, the Douglas C-47, and the Curtiss C-46 Commando were outdated.

In 1951, USAF put out a General Operating Requirement for a new transport to the Boeing Aircraft company, Douglas Aircraft, Fairchild Aircraft, Lockheed Aircraft, Martin Aircraft, chase Aircraft, North American Aviation, Northrup Aircraft and Airlifts, Inc.

The transport should be able to carry 92 passengers, or 72 combat troops, or 64 paratroops in a cargo compartment that would be approximately 41 feet long, 10 feet wide and 9 feet high with a hinged folding ramp in the tail of the aircraft.

The ramp was necessary to be able to load military equipment such as Sheridan tanks, jeeps and other rolling stock. It also must be able to support the dropping of special airdrop cargo including rolling stock and even “cluster bombs”.

The aircraft also must be able to use four Allison T-56 turboprop engines which were being designed by Allison aircraft under a separate contract.

Four of the companies, Fairchild Aircraft, North American Aviation, Martin Aircraft and Northrup Aviation declined to bid for the contract. Of the remaining 5 companies, Lockheed and Douglas Aircraft were in close competition.

The Lockheed design team was headed by Willis Hawkins which included Hall Hibbard and Kelley Johnson. Hibbard who was vice-President and Chief Engineer asked Kelley Johnson what he thought of the low-speed and unarmed aircraft proposal.

Kelly remarked ..”that this aircraft would destroy the Lodhkeen Company”. Both Hibbard and Johnson signed the proposal and a Lockheed won the contract on 02 July 1951.

The first flight of the YC-130 was on 23 August 1954 with Stanley Beltz, Roy Wimmer, Jack Real and Dick Stanton making up the crew. Kelly Johnson flew a Lockheed P2V as a chase plane on the 61-minute flight from Burbank, California to Edwards AFB in Lancaster, California.

When the prototype testing was completed in the California desert, production began in Marietta, Georgia, where over 2,300 Hercules have been built. The C-130 A had Allison T56-A-9 turboprop engines with 3 bladed propellers.

The C-130B was developed to improve the range with pylon fuel tanks and Hamilton Standard 4 bladed propellers which became standard until the “J” model.

The C-130E had an extended range with large wing tanks and a more powerful Allison T-56-A-7A engines. A whole host of varieties of C-130s were developed through the years as it has been over 64 years since that first test flight.

One other variant was the KC-130F tanker used by the USMC for aerial refusing. The C-130H was introduced in 1974 and is still in use today by several nation’s military. In the 1990s, the C-130J came out with new engines and a 6 bladed propeller, digital avionics and other new systems.

Operational History

In 1956 the first production C-130A went to USAF at Ardmore AFB Oklahoma and Sewart AFB Tennessee. In time C-130s were assigned to nearly every theater around the world. The Royal Austrailian Air Force became the first non-American military to purchase the C-130 in late 1958. The Royal Canadian Air Force took delivery of C-i30s in 1960.

The USN/USMC wanted to test the possibility of using a Hercules to be a supply aircraft for USN aircraft carriers. A USMC KC-130 was used for 29 touch and go landings and 21 full stop landings on the USS Forrestal bu USN Pilot Lieutenant James Flatley who was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and later was promoted to Rear Admiral.

The project was considered too dangerous for routine supply support and was canceled. The Grumman C-2 Greyhound was then developed as the official Carrier Onboard Delivery ((COD). The Grumman was a twin-engine, high-wing cargo aircraft designed to carry a limited amount of supplies from USN base off-shore to an aircraft carrier.

Some other specialized missions the C-130 was called on to perform in Vietnam was the FAC (forward air control l) over the Ho Chi Minh Trail to lead air strikes on specific targets by B-57 bombers to interdict the supply routes from North Vietnam to the South.

Hercules in the role of FAC would fly missions over North and South Vietnam looking for opportune targets for Allied strike craft to attack.

In Africa, in November of 1964, the C-130s assisted the United States and Belgium military in a hostage situation in the Belgium Congo which required the C-130 land landing and picking up of paratroops and air dropping them near the target areas. The rescue of hostages was a success and the rebels were captured.

During the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, the Pakistan Air Force modified its small fleet of C-130s to carry bombs on pallets to drop on Indian targets such as bridges, artillery placements, and concentrated troop locations. The bombs which weighted about 20,000 lbs were shoved off the ramp in the aft section of the aircraft over the designed targets.

The Commando Vault operation was to drop 10,000 bombs to clear Landing Zones or LZ for helicopter operations in 1969. They also used these bombs from C-130 Hercules on enemy (VC) base camps and other appropriate targets.

This was unusual for a transport to perform such a task as the sudden shift in weight, of the aircraft, could provide a tricky situation for the pilots.

The Heavey Tea operation was for a C-130 to drop two battery pallets with sensors near the Lop NurChinese nuclear testing area to monitor China’s nuclear weapons program.

This turned out to be a grand success but required the C-130 to fly 6 1/2 hours from Takhli, Thailand to the target area and another 6 1/2 hours at low altitude to return to base.

In Conclusion

The Lockheed C-130 was designed to haul cargo, passengers, and troops to designed locations. But the diversity of it made a great artillery platform, gunship (machine guns), even a makeshift bomber.

The Forestry Service used the C-130A, which was retired by the military,  for firefighting and other forestry observing missions. The Hercules was also used to treat oil spills on the ocean, lakes or rivers.

The C-130J is still active with new engines, new electronics, six-bladed propellers and other new systems. The Lockheed C-130 Hercules has been a workhorse for many countries throughout the world and will continue to be for many nations in the years to come.

Where you can see the Lockheed C-130 Hercules

#55-037 Museum of Missouri Military Histi9ry Jefferson City, Missouri.

#56-0518 Little Rock Air Force Base Visitor Center, Little Rock Arkansas

#57-0457 Pima Air and Space Museum Tucson, Arizona

#570453 National Vigilance Park, National Security Agency, Fort George                           Meade, Maryland

#57-0489 Empire State Air Museum Schenectady County Airport, New York

#BuNo15-1891 National Museum of Naval Aviation, Pensacola, Florida.

#62-1787 National Museum of the United State Air Force, Wright-                                         Patterson   AFB, Dayton Ohio

This is Just a Partial List of the Lockheed C-130 Hercules on Display. Check With Your Local Air Museum for More Information.

Tech Specs for the Lockheed C-130H

Wingspan: 132 ft 7 in

Length: 97 ft 9 in

Height: 38 ft 3 in

Weight: 75,800 lbs (empty); Useful Load” 72,000 lbs; MTOW 155,00 lbs                         (Max Take Off Weight)

Max Speed: 366 mph; Cruise Speed 336 mph

Ceiling: 33,000 ft (empty); 23,000 ft with a 42,000 lb load

Range: 2,360 mi

Engine: 4/Allison T-56-A-15 Turboprop engines rated at 4,5900 hp each;                   4/4 bladed propellers

Crew: 5; 2 pilots, navigator, flight engineer, and loadmaster

Load Capacity: 92 Passengers or 74 Litter patients or 64 airborne troops                                     or 6 pallets of cargo.


North American F 82 Twin Mustang


The North American F-82 Twin Mustang was designed after the North American P-51 Mustang which was a long range fighter-escort from World War II. The War ended before the F-82 units could be organized, but the post-War needs were still there as a new adversary came foth–the Soviet Union.

The original designation of the P82 now became the F-82 for “Fighter”as the design was for the F-82 to be a long range escort. It was to be a replacement for the Northrup P-61 Black Widow as an all weather day/night interceptor. Although it “missed” World War Ii, it was used in the Korean War. It was the first United States Air Force (USAFF) aircraft to operate over Korea and the first to down 3 North Korean aircraft, the first to be a Yak-11.

There were 272 F-82s Twin Mustang produced

F-82 Twin Mustang

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Beechcraft D-18


The Beechcraft D-18 also known as the “Twin Beech” is a twin engine, low wing, tailwheel aircraft that could carry 6-11 passengers built by Beech Aircraft Corporation of Wichita, Kansas.

This aircraft was produced from 1937 to November 1969, a period of 32 years. There were over 9,000 built making it one of the worlds’ most widely used light aircraft. It had many uses cargo, passenger, VIP aircraft and many uses in the military as transport.

During and after World War Ii it was used by the military besides being a great transport, navigational trainer, bombing trainer, gunnery training, photo recon, drone target puller. The aircraft identifiers when used by the United States Army air Force (USAAF) were C-45 Expeditor, AT-7 Navigator, UC-45 Navigator and with United States Navy (USN) SNB-1 and SNB-2.

In the early pre- WWII days, it was the pre-eminent “business aircraft” and “feeder airliner”. Later it was used in civil purposes as: aerial spraying, sterile insect release, aerial firefighting, air mail delivery, air ambulance, movie productions, skydiving, freight hauling, weapon/drug smuggling (when the smugglers got caught, an aircraft auction occurred) the D-18 was also a skywriter and banner towing.

Many Beech D18s are privately own in the world with 240 registered with the United States Federal Aviation Administration.

On a personal note: I got my first twin-engine time as a young pilot, flying the D-18 on FAA radar testing station in Fontana CA. It was quite a thrill.

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The Douglas DC-3

Douglas DC-3


In 1935, the first Douglas DC-3 took to the skies that began an incredible advancement in transportation in that started the world on its way to fast, reliable and safe way to travel. The DC-3 had a lasting effect on the airline industry and made it one of the most significant transport every made.

The Dc-3 was an all metal monoplane that was designed to be an all sleeper version of the DC-2. It was fast, reliable could operate off short runways. Plus it had a good range (for the time), easy to maintain and provide passengers with great comfort.

In the 1930s, the DC-3 pioneered many new routes across the country, making it possible to fly transcontinental in a matter of a few hours. It was the first airliner to make money by carrying passengers alone.

The Civil DC-3 ended production in 1942, but the military venison, the C-47 (also known as the Dakota in England) continued on in production until 1950. There were 607 Civil DC-3s and over 16,000 of the military venison of all types built between 1936 and 1950.

After World War II, as aviation technology advanced, big four-engine aircraft like the Lockheed Constellation and the DC-4 replaced the smaller DC-3. However, the DC-3 continued to service many communities through the years.

There were estimated over 2,000 DC-3s still flying as of 2013 throughout the world. Most of these aircraft were used as a “niche “role, quite a testament to the design of this popular and sturdy aircraft.

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The Boeing 314 Flying Boat


The Boeing 314 Flying Boat also known as the Boeing Clipper was built by Boeing Airplane Company from 1938-1941. It was used by two airlines and later the United States Navy (USN) for long range flights across the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.

There were only 12 built,  these going to Pan American Airways. Pan Am sold three Clippers to British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC). The nine Flying Boats at Pan Am were later transferred to United States Navy (USN).

The Boeing 314 was a marvelous aircraft of its day but had a short life span as it was retired in 1946.

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North American A-36 Apache


North American Aircraft produced a relatively unknown ground attack and dive bomber called the Invader or A-36 during World War II. This was a brother to the North American P-51 Mustang however it had rectangular, slatted dive brakes above and below the wing.

It served from 1942-1944 in North Africa, Mediterranean, Italy and the China-Burma-India theaters.

North American built 500 of the A-36 Apache which were used by the United States Army Air Force (USAAF) which were retired in 1945.

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