Photo above by Mike Killian
Days shy of flying the Arsenal of Democracy in Washington, D.C., the D-Day Squadron has officially launched its well awaited DC-3 Society. Having met each flyover mission, outreach event, airshow performance and display with success since their inception four years ago, the operators and crew of these historic DC-3s began to experience a growing volume of interest in this legendary aircraft, as well, the many veterans in which it represents. With a mission to organize the interest of DC-3 operators, enthusiasts and crew while maintaining airworthiness and displays for future generations, the DC-3 Society also focuses on representing everything the DC-3 has accomplished in war and peace.
“I am privileged to be associated with the DC-3 Society. This launch represents the culmination of hundreds of volunteer hours. We are all passionate about the history these aircraft embody and the legacy that they represent,” expressed Paul Bazeley, owner of Aerometal International, the first affiliate partner to the society, and founding DC-3 operator member. “As chair of the maintenance committee, I look forward to being involved in further efforts with the society to safeguard the ongoing preservation and operation of these historic machines.”
Notably over the years, the D-Day Squadron witnessed a plethora of young people whose minds and curiosity sparked with the site of a DC-3. At events, airshows and through displays, various DC-3s get a chance to showcase its legendary aeronautical design, agility in flight and unique ability to educate the public, of all ages, how it served major events in our world history. It’s not just a DC-3, it’s flying history!
“I feel that it is necessary to ensure that young children and students understand World War II and our nation’s history as a whole,” shared Michael Naya, Jr., a freshman studying history at Kean University, Union. “In the words of George Santayana, ‘Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.’ I feel that we often go throughout our lives thinking we did very little although that is not true. Every individual young and old has a story!”
Through the work of the DC-3 Society, a Young Historians program was established under the D-Day Squadron to continue sharing the compelling stories of the DC-3 and our veterans.
“To be a founding member of the Young Historians Program is a true honor, as well, preserving the memories of our final World War II veterans has been a privilege”, Naya added. “To be a historian alongside the D-Day Squadron is one of the most important opportunities I’ve been given. All of those involved with the D-Day Squadron are in turn writing their own stories and thus making history and an impact along the way.”
As part of the new DC-3 Society, members will have access to a private web forum, tailored support for aircraft airworthiness and maintenance, private Facebook Group access, special gifts from the D-Day Squadron, newsletter, invitation to special events, as well, product and service discounts through an industry affiliate partner program.
“Our veterans are our window to the past, and developing a stronger force behind the DC-3 is a chance for us to continue honoring those who made sacrifices for the freedoms we have today,” shared Lauren Roberts, membership coordinator for the DC-3 Society and veteran of the business aviation sector. “Our members not only benefit from their participation in our DC-3 type society, they are a part of making history come to life, for young to elder audiences we are engaged.”
The DC-3 Society encourages all people, no matter their background, involvement or interest in aviation, to consider joining the society. Member levels and benefits are provided on the new website, which can be found by visiting: www.DDaySquadron.org