Welcome to the Big Sky Wing branch of the Commemorative Air Force! Meet our project plane.
This is an SNJ-5 Texan. The SNJ-5 was one of 1573 AT-6D Texans released by the USAAC to the Navy as trainers and designated as the SNJ. The AT-6D was the same as the AT-6B but had a 24v DC electrical system.
Our SNJ-5, serial number 51864-1, was released by the war assets administration in December 1947 with the Pratt and Whitney 600 R-1340-AN-1. Sadly not much is known between 1947 when it was released and when the first owner, Arthur Medore of Hemet, CA, took ownership in September of 1999.
Under Arthur Medore, the plane was first registered as N4082G with the FAA. In May of 2002, 51864-1 was sold to Loren B Buss of Crop Care Inc. in Monte Vista, CO where it stayed for 16 years before being acquired by the Commemorative Air Force in 2018. 51864-1 got its new home in 2019 in Bozeman, Mt.
The Commemorative Air Force has been around for over 60 years. It started with one plane and has grown to be one of the world’s largest air forces with over 175 flying aircraft. Of course, none of this would be possible without the help of thousands of volunteers and members.
- To acquire, restore and preserve in flying condition a complete collection of combat aircraft that were flown by all military services of the United States and selected aircraft of other nations for the education and enjoyment of present and future generations of Americans.
- To provide museum buildings for the permanent protection and display of these aircraft as a tribute to the thousands of men and women who built, serviced, and flew them.
- To perpetuate in the memory and in the hearts of all Americans the spirit in which these great planes were flown in the defense of our nation.
- To establish an organization having the dedication, enthusiasm, and esprit de corps necessary to operate, maintain and preserve these aircraft as symbols of our American military aviation heritage.