The former pilot of a vintage DC-3 now on display at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) plans to share memories of flying the classic aircraft during a presentation at the airportís Flight Path Learning Center and Museum Thursday, April 23rd.
Bob Beechler, who flew the twin-engine, propeller-powered aircraft as a corporate pilot for Union Oil Co., will present ìThe DC-3 from the Pilotís Seatî at 10 a.m. at Flight Path in the LAX Imperial Terminal, 6661 W. Imperial Highway, Westchester. The program is open to the public and admission and parking are free.
Beechler began his flying career in 1959 after training under the GI Bill, according to Flight Path president Rowena Ake. He logged a total of 15,500 hours in the air, including flying for oil companies in the Sahara Desert followed by more than 27 years with Union Oil.
In addition to flying corporate executives and other officials on the DC-3, Beechler piloted C-47 transports and Gulfstream and Lockheed Jetstar business aircraft. He retired in January 1994.
ìOur Flight Path visitors have seen the DC-3 on the tarmac next to our museum,î said Ake. ìCaptain Beechler will bring this aircraft back to life for us, sharing his memories and adventures as its pilot.î
The DC-3 on display was manufactured in 1941 at the Douglas Aircraft Company plant in Santa Monica. The plane, which carried TWA passengers prior to its purchase by Union Oil, was later acquired by the California Science Center and is on extended loan to Flight Path.
The museum is operated by Flight Path in cooperation with Los Angeles World Airports, the city agency which operates LAX.
Information, (310) 215-5291 or www.flightpath.us/.