last 40 years, the Quiet Birdmen have gathered at the Broome Ranch in
Camarillo for a private airshow and barbeque. Jack Broome passed away
in April of 2009 and many thought that the 39th year would be the last
show. The family decided to have one last hurrah at the ranch. I
arranged with the CAF SoCal Wing to get a photo ship up near the ranch
for some photos. All aircraft that fly for the event stage out of
Camarillo Airport. The CAF SoCal Wing uses their ramp to get many of
the planes prepared. Many of the CAF volunteers marshall the aircraft
and get them positioned on the ramp for a smooth departure in the right
order. The museum hangar is used for the pilot briefing.
briefing at 2:00 PM
Alan Gaynor was the pilot
for the photo ship. We took off at 3:45 from Camarillo and would spend
the next three hours circling over the Conejo grade, ready to take
photos of anyone wanting to do so.
Alan Gaynor, my photo ship pilot,
in the CAF SoCal's SNJ. This was the photo ship.
The view of Camarillo Airport after
takeoff and our right departure.
We had a great view of the
airshow from our vantage point. We could see the aircraft passing over
the ranch. It was even easier to see the aerobatic aircraft with the
smoke systems on.
Rob Harrison "Tumbling Bear"
performing for the ranch crowd.
Our first photo subject
was the Northrop N9MB from the Planes of Fame, flown by Ron Hackworth.
He was about 2,000 feet below us, so we descended and caught up to him
to catch a few photos.
Closing with the N9MB over
The N9MB from the front quarter
As the schedule
fluctuated, some of the fighters circled until it was their turn. To
see multiple WWII fighters circling over the marine layer of the
Pacific and circle by us was reminiscent of a bygone era.
The F8F Bearcat and F7F Tigercat
Dustin Gelbard and Ken
Gottschall joined up in Charlie Plumb's Fairchild PT-19. Charlie keeps
the airplane at the CAF SoCal Wing, who keep it maintained well and
flown regularly. I have heard many a pilot say that it is a fun
airplane to fly.
Dustin and Ken in Charlie Plumb's
Banking into the turn a bit.
Dustin and Ken moving on below.
Gary Barber joined up on
us flying the CAF SoCal Wing's F8F Bearcat. You could hear the big
R-2800 engine over the roar of the engine in the SNJ. Having
photographed this airplane many times from the ground, and on the
ground, this was a big treat for me.
Gary in the Bearcat.
The F8F Bercat with ideal lighting
John Collver and his SNJ
"War Dog" has been around the Southern California air show circuit for
many years. He gave us a nice smoke pass before returning to base.
John Collver in his SNJ "War Dog"
John passing by.
Bruce Dickenson caught up
with us for a few shots in his replica of the 1930s air racer "Mr
Mulligan" based on the Howard DGA. He also flew a couple of times
around with Snead Special Turbine Legend. It was an unusual formation
of old and new technologies.
Mr Mulligan, owned and flown by
Mr Mulligan and the Snead Special
The Snead Special Turbine Legend.
With the turbo-prop and looks similar to a Mustang, this is one cool
The 805 Squadron of North
American Navions joined up on our left side for some nice formation
shots. North American started building these just after World War II.
The Navions coming up on our port
The four North American Navions
that make up the 805 Squadron.
I have talked with Gregg
Weitzman at several airshows and have been wanting to get some
air-to-air shots of his T-28A Trojan for a long time. I was glad to be
able to capture this beautiful T-28 at last in the air. The paint
scheme is of the Edwards AFB Test Pilot School in the 1950s.
Gregg Weitzman's beautiful T-28A
Gregg's T-28A from the other side.
With the ranch airshow
completed, Alan called in to the air boss for the event to see if we
could make a few passes over the ranch to get a few photos of the folks
at the ranch. We made three passes over the ranch and in doing so,
became the last airplane to pass over the ranch for the last QB show.
It was a great honor to be the final flyover. On the rhird pass, we
gave a wing waggle to the folks below before heading back to Camarillo
Jack Broome's ranch, with the QB
members enjoying the last show and barbeque.
After 40 years, the show
and barbeque at Broome ranch has ended. Memories of past QB shows at
the ranch will be fond for many. Because of Jack Broome and his love of
aviation, and ability to hold this event for forty years, we all got to
see some interesting and rare aircraft.
My personal thanks go out
to Steve Barber for arranging the photo ship, Alan Gaynor for 3 great
hours of flying, the Broome family, the QB crew and members, the pilots
of the aircraft that came up to be photographed and the army of folks
at the CAF SoCal Wing who make it all happen. Keep 'em flying.
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