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PROGRAM SPOTLIGHTS GEN. JIMMY DOOLITTLE

Doolittle Gen. JimmyOne of the best remembered military figures of World War II will be spotlighted when the Flight Path Speaker Series continues on Tuesday, Sept. 20, at 10 a.m.  Don Penny, longtime aide to Gen. James H. “Jimmy” Doolittle, will share his personal recollections of the pilot who led the daring 1942 U. S. air raid over Tokyo on orders of President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Doolittle and his raiders later were immortalized in the Hollywood feature film, “Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo,” starring Spencer Tracy as Doolittle.   Later, in retirement, the general came to have a close association with Los Angeles International Airport through his  friendship with Clifton A. Moore, the airport’s longtime general manager.  Doolittle headlined a number of special events at LAX, including an appearance as featured speaker for the dedication ceremonies at Terminal One in 1982.  Later a USO lounge at the airport was named in Doolittle’s honor.
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Don Penny served as an assistant to Doolittle during the postwar years.  He later performed a similar role for President Gerald R. Ford.  Penny will share an extensive collection of mementos during his Flight Path presentation.
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The final program in this year’s Speaker Series will be “Aircraft in Focus,” an exhibition featuring the work of aviation photographer Jean-christophe Dick of HNTB Corp.  The show opens with a presentation by the photographer on November 12th and continues for one week in Flight Path’s main gallery.
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All Flight Path Speaker Series programs begin at 10 a.m.  Admission and parking are free.

 

GOODYEAR, BOEING LEGACIES SALUTED

     
Boeing707The Boeing 707

The popular Flight Path Speaker Series continues with spring and summer programs saluting two key milestones in aviation history, the 90th anniversary of the famed Goodyear blimps and the 100th anniversary of the founding of aircraft manufacturer Boeing.

A presentation on April 26, “Goodyear Blimps Yesterday and Today,” spotlights the Goodyear airships seen for many years in the Southern California skies, noted especially for hovering over the Tournament of Roses Parade on New Years’ Day. Goodyear operations staff will be on hand to review the nine-decade history of this familiar aircraft, beginning with 1925’s first blimp up to and including the newly-launched “Wingfoot One.”

Boeing takes the spotlight at Flight Path on June 28 with “Boeing’s First Hundred Years,” a program marking the firm’s centennial of aircraft manufacturing.  The presentation by corporate staff will include a review of Boeing’s most notable aircraft, including its first commercial jet, the 707, the iconic 747, the popular 737 and 777 and today’s 787 Dreamliner.  Boeing remains a major manufacturer in Southern California, producing satellites, rockets and updated C-17 aircraft.  A number of other companies in the Southland perform important subcontract work for Boeing.

The Flight Path Speaker Series moves into the fall season with a program keyed to military aviation plus a presentation and exhibition focused on aviation photography.

“My Friend Jimmy Doolittle” is the title of a September 20 program about the headline-making aviator of World War II.  His friend and aide Don Penny will share memories of working with the general. Penny also served as an aide to President Gerald R. Ford.

The final program in this year’s Speaker Series will be “Aircraft in Focus,” an exhibition featuring the work of aviation photographer Jean-christophe Dick.  The show opens with a presentation by the photographer on November 5 and continues for two weeks in Flight Path’s main gallery.

All Flight Path Speaker Series programs begin at 10 a.m.  Admission and parking are free.

FLIGHT PATH BOARD NAMES OFFICERS

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Lynne AdelmanLynne Adelman was elected president and board chair of Flight Path during a recent meeting of the nonprofit organization’s board of directors. Flight Path operates an aviation museum and learning center in the Imperial Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport.

Adelman, a resident of Westchester, is a longtime member of the board and its most recent vice president.  She first joined the museum staff as a volunteer and has directed major fundraising events. Adelman is a former airline flight attendant and passenger services manager and has been active in aviation and community organizations.

Other officers elected were Lori Keir of Westchester, vice president; Robert E. Smith of Hawthorne, chief financial officer and treasurer; and Agnes Huff of Playa del Rey, corporate secretary. Nancy Niles of Pacific Palisades is immediate past president. Continuing in office are Lee Nichols, Flight Path executive director, and Beverly Migliazzo, recording secretary.

Re-elected to new three-year terms on the board were Lynne Adelman, John Burke, Ethel Pattison and Robert Slusser.  Board members chairing standing committees are Ethel Pattison, museum operations; Vincent Migliazzo, flight simulator training programs; Robert Acherman, electronic communications; Barbara Keller, scholarships; and Lori Keir, awards. Other members are Rowena Ake, past president; Nissen Davis, Ron Kochevar, Bill Miller and Stephen Soukup.

‘Stars in the Sky’ Salutes First African-American Flight Attendants

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Casey Grant will open the 2016 Flight Path Speaker Series with an account of her experiences as one of the first African-American airline flight attendants.  This special Black History Month program is scheduled on Tuesday, February 16, at 10 a.m. at the Flight Path Museum in the LAX Imperial Terminal, 6661 W. Imperial Highway, Los Angeles. Admission and parking are free.

Based on her new book, Stars in the Sky, Grant’s presentation will review the challenges and rewards she and her African-American colleagues faced as they sought the glamour and prestige of a career in the sky, according to Flight Path President Nancy Niles.

“These women faced cultural barriers, misunderstanding and even hostility,” said Niles. “Casey Grant will share with us the powerful but little known story of their role in the civil rights movement.  It is a story that deserves to be remembered and respected by all of us.”

Copies of Grant’s book, Stars in the Sky, will be available for purchase after the program.  The book also will be available for future reference in the museum’s William A. Schoneberger Research Library.

The Flight Path Speaker Series will continue throughout 2016 with programs featuring a history of the famed Goodyear blimps, a salute to the 100th anniversary of the Boeing Aircraft Company, a memoir of famed World War II pilot General Jimmy Doolittle, and a special presentation and exhibition by aviation photographer Jean-christophe Dick.  Dates and further information will be posted soon on the Flight Path website www.flightpathmuseum.com/.

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CaseyGrant BREAKING BARRIERS:  Based on her new book, Stars in the Sky, Casey Grant joins the Flight Path Speaker Series on February 16 to share the story of how the first African-American flight attendants kept their heads high while facing down racial barriers to achieve rewarding airline careers.

‘Spy in the Sky’ Headlines Speaker Series Program

The December 5 Flight Path Speaker Series program will focus on the Hexagon KH-9 reconnaissance satellite, also known as the CIA's "Spy in the Sky." Project engineer Phil Pressel will speak.

The December 5 Flight Path Speaker Series program will focus on the Hexagon KH-9 reconnaissance satellite, also known as the CIA’s “Spy in the Sky.” Project engineer Phil Pressel will speak.

The 2015 Flight Path Speaker Series will conclude on Saturday, December 5, with project engineer Phil Pressel’s program, “The Hexagon KH-9 Reconnaissance Satellite,” covering development and design of the satellite for the CIA. The program will begin at 10 a.m. at the Flight Path Museum in the LAX Imperial Terminal, 6661 W. Imperial Highway Los Angeles. Admission and parking are free.
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The Hexagon KH-9 was the last orbiting reconnaissance camera (spy in the sky) that used film for photography. It played an important chapter in U. S. intelligence and aerospace history.
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The December 5 event is a follow-up to a similar program presented last year by Col. Stephen Soukup (USAF-ret.), according to Nancy Niles, the museum’s president.  “There was so much interest in last year’s space satellite presentation,” said Niles, “that we are offering yet another opportunity to learn more about this fascinating subject.”
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John McCone, director of the CIA in 1965, wanted a new spy satellite that could achieve broad area coverage of the entire landmass of the earth and high resolution stereo photos of local areas. As the program was highly classified, the initial study for the Hexagon program, conducted by Pressel’s company, the Perkin-Elmer Corp., was presented to the CIA at night in a deserted looking safe house in Washington, D.C. The CIA thought highly of the concept and Perkin-Elmer eventually was awarded the job.
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This orbiting spy camera turned out to become a huge success. Pressel’s talk features interesting anecdotes, personal stories and some technical details about this complex camera system that was capable of distinguishing objects two to three feet in size from an altitude of 100 miles above the earth.
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The Hexagon satellite was acknowledged to have been an invaluable asset providing  intelligence information and was said to be responsible for President Nixon signing the SALT treaty and allowing President Reagan to “trust but verify” what the Russians were doing during the cold war. The first launch was on June 15, 1971, and the last of 19 missions sadly exploded 800 feet above the pad at Vandenberg Air Force Base on April 18, 1986, just a few months after the Challenger’s tragic explosion.

 

Flight Path’s Gen. Kevin Chilton Headlines
‘Day of Discovery’

chiltonkevinGen. Kevin P. Chilton (USAF-Ret.) of the Flight Path Museum Advisory Board will be featured speaker at the Day of Discovery, a community aviation and aerospace event, scheduled on Saturday, November 7, 2015, at Loyola Marymount University in Westchester.
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This free event, presented by LMU and Los Angeles World Airports Community Relations, is open to the public and will feature an aviation and aerospace exposition from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and General Chilton’s presentation from 1 to 2 p.m.  The general is a former Space Shuttle Endeavour pilot and Space Shuttle Atlantis commander.  He also served as head of the U. S. Strategic Command.  Chilton is a native of Westchester and a graduate of Visitation Elementary School and St. Bernard High School.
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The Day of Discovery expo will feature information booths from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Aero Club of Southern California, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles World Airports Community Relations, Flight Path Museum and Learning Center, Columbia Memorial Space Center, Women in Aviation, World Trade Week, Spartan College, Los Angeles Lakers and others.  A buffet of heavy hors d’oeuvres also will featured.
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Flight Path’s participation in the Day of Discovery highlights the museum’s ongoing commitment to aviation education, according to Nancy Niles, Flight Path president.  “General Chilton shares this commitment as a key member of our advisory board,” said Niles.  “We are extremely pleased that he will be participating in this community event.”
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More information on the Day of Discovery, including detailed event and parking locations, are available at the event website www.lawa.org/dayofdiscovery

Summer Programs Focus on War Valor, Air Victuals

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This TWA memorabilia, part of the Flight Path collection, is a reminder of elegant food service sometimes offered to travelers through the years by various airlines. Richard Foss, South Bay journalist, will present, “The History of Food in Flight,” as part of the Flight Path Speaker Series on September 22 at 10 a.m.
(Photo by Larry Underhill).

Flight Path’s summer schedule includes another program in the popular Flight Path Speaker Series as well as a special exhibition paying tribute to the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II.The Speaker Series continues on Tuesday, September 22, at 10 a.m. with Richard Foss headlining the program.  His topic, “The History of Food in Flight,” will survey the often mixed results of airline attempts over the years to satisfy hungry travelers with fare ranging from pretzels to prime rib.  Foss, a South Bay resident, is familiar to many local residents as a news reporter and commentator.
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A collection of memorabilia from the famed Flying Tigers of World War II will be on display at Flight Path from August 5 to 19. Dr. Pedro Chan, an internationally recognized authority on the Flying Tigers, has collected the items and made them available for this special exhibition.The Flying Tigers were a group of volunteer American aviators who helped defend China from Japanese aggression during World War II. Following the war, members of the group founded The Flying Tiger Line, an all-cargo commercial air carrier which was based for many years at Los Angeles International Airport. The Flying Tiger Line later became part of Federal Express.

Dr. Chan has exhibited his collection of World War II Flying Tigers memorabilia in Washington, D.C., and at several U.S. military bases. He also serves as an adviser to the Pacific Aviation Museum at Pearl Harbor, the Chinese American Museum in Los Angeles and the Flying Tigers Historical Organization.

Speaker Taps Aviation Stars to Lift Troop Morale

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Flight Path Director Nissen Davis headlines the museum’s Speaker Series on June 23 with a program on his work with aviation and aerospace celebrities for the Morale Entertainment Foundation. Pictured on a mission to entertain U. S. military personnel are, from left, Davis, astronaut Jim Lovell, SR-71 test pilot Bob Gilliland and astronaut Neil Armstrong.

Boosting the spirits of U. S. service personnel was the goal when Flight Path Director Nissen Davis recruited five aviation celebrities to visit 10 military bases and an aircraft carrier at sea.  Davis will recount highlights of this and similar missions on Tuesday, June 23, at 10 a.m. at the Flight Path Museum in the LAX Imperial Terminal, 6661 W. Imperial Highway, Los Angeles.
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Sponsored by the nonprofit Morale Entertainment Foundation in cooperation with the Pentagon, mission headliners included astronauts Neil Armstrong, Jim Lovell and Gene Cernan, SR-71 test pilot Bob Gilliland and Vietnam War air ace Steve Ritchie.
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“Morale Entertainment turned to me,” said Davis, “because I had been lucky enough to get to know some of these legends in my 30 years working for Flying Tigers, McDonnell Douglas and Hughes, as well as being the organizer of the annual Howard Hughes Memorial Award.”
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Davis has coordinated two additional Morale Entertainment visits to U. S. military forces.  One celebrated the Indy 500 Centennial and featured top Indy drivers Johnny Rutherford and Al Unser, Jr.  Another, staged aboard a U. S. Navy nuclear carrier in San Diego, featured the opening game of the NCAA season with honorary coaches Magic Johnson and James Worthy.  Special guests were President Obama and the First Lady.
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The Flight Path Speaker Series is open to the public with time allotted at the end of each program for questions from the audience.  Admission and parking are free.  The museum and learning center is operated by nonprofit Flight Path in cooperation with Los Angeles World Airports, the City agency which operates Los Angeles International Airport.
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For more information call (424) 646-7284, or send an email to: flightpathguides@lawa.org

Program to Focus on LAX Improvements

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The Tom Bradley International Terminal

A progress report on the current LAX airport improvement program is scheduled on Tuesday, April 28, at 10 a.m. at the Flight Path Museum in the LAX Imperial Terminal, 6661 W. Imperial Hwy., Los Angeles.  Tim Ihle of the Los Angeles World Airports development staff will provide a status update on upgrades to airline passenger facilities, ground transportation and other major construction projects underway or planned at the airport.
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Recent major expansion of the Tom Bradley International Terminal is but one step in the airport’s overall improvement program, according to Nancy Niles, Flight Path president. “Tim Ihle’s presentation will bring us a complete picture of what will happen in the next few years to bring LAX to a higher standard of passenger service,” said Niles. “Tim is an excellent speaker. His two previous presentations as part of our Speaker Series have been well attended and extremely informative.”
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Speaker Series programs are open to the public, with time allotted at the end of each program for questions from the audience. Admission and parking are free.  Flight Path is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.  The museum and learning center is operated by nonprofit Flight Path in cooperation with Los Angeles World Airports, the City agency which operates Los Angeles International Airport.
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For more information call (424) 646-7284 or email flightpathguides@lawa.org