CAF 'Tex Hill Wing' Brings Aircraft Preservation Mission to Stinson Field

The Tex Hill Chapter of the Commemorative Air Force has landed at San Antonio's Stinson Airport, and will be housed in historic Hangar 3, the actual hangar where the future Flying Tiger and Army Air Corps General learned to fly, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

"So when Tex Hill, who were named after, wanted to go flying, this is where he came to, actually this hangar," said Col. Larry Stacey, the commander of the CAF chapter.

The CAF will utilize the hangar to continue to restore a 1942 model SNJ-4, similar to the T-6 trainer planes used at Randolph Air Base in the forties and fifties.

Stacey says with the final cohort World War II veterans beginning to die, the work of the CAF is becoming more critical.  He says the number of people with living memory of the airplanes the CAF preserves is dwindling, so it is critical to keep these key reminders of America's military aviation history flying.

He says the SNJ-4 is airworthy, and will be used to provide flights for veterans and for paying guests, and will also be used in displays and ceremonies honoring the country's military aviators.

Gen. Hill, who grew up in San Antonio and died in 2007 in Terrell Hills, was one of the most respected pilots of World War II, and recipient of three distinguished flying crosses, started flying under the Chinese Flag with the Flying Tigers, and later transitioned to the 23rd Fighter Group of the US Army Air Corps, flying P-51s in the Pacific theater.  

Hill then led the Texas Air National Guard, and flew combat missions with the Guard in the Korean War.  

He is a member of the Texas and National Aviation Halls of Fame, and is buried at Ft. Sam Cemetery.

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