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Chester County Press

Festival of Flight has thrills in the air and on the ground

08/23/2016 09:57AM ● By Richard Gaw
By Richard L. Gaw
Staff Writer

For the thousands who attended the 45th Annual Festival of Flight Air and Car Show last weekend at the New Garden Flying Field, the strained necks they experienced were not from looking up at the sun, which hammered its heat down all day Saturday. Rather, it was to catch the magnificent men and their flying machines, soaring and circling high above the event.
After the traditional pancake breakfast at EAA Chapter 240's offices kicked off both days, early bird visitors quickly began to fill the sloping meadow area that spilled down to acres of vintage cars, aircraft, demonstrations, food trucks and vendors. While the grounds of the flying field were covered with the eye candy of aircraft and automobiles, the sky above was dotted with daredevils and fly-overs – everyone from pilots from the New Garden Flight School to the aerobatics of Kevin Russo, Jason Flood Pitts, Dan Marcette and Greg Shelton.
Throughout the weekend, the show twice paid tribute to World War II veterans. “Briefing Time,” a restored North American B-25 Mitchell Bomber provided by the Mid-Atlantic Air Museum, was on display. The plane served in the Italian Campaign in World War II, and was considered the best medium bomber in the war. Oxford resident and World War II engineer Bill Fili gave presentations about his experiences as a top turret gunner on a B-24D Liberator, where he flew 34 missions over Germany and other parts of Europe.
To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, e-mail

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