Another Historian for the Crashes at Mitchel Field

One of the hardest things I have had to do for this site is put together the story of my uncle, Don Gaston Shofner, and how he was killed flying his P-47 Thunderbolt over Long Island Sound.  It’s a tragedy that altered the course of my family history and my own life.

dscn3536

If the plane had been recovered it might look something like this one, fished out of the Pacific. In Gaston’s case, however, the engine separated from the cockpit. This is also at the Tennessee Museum of Aviation.

Gaston’s death wasn’t unique: the USAAF was having all kinds of “growing pains” with its equipment and there were numerous accidents.  These and more are documented in this page from the excellent website of amateur historian Paul Martin on Mitchel Field, where this and much more information on this important place for American aviation are documented.

When I first posted this, I was pretty much on my own.  In the years since then I have been gratified by people such as Bob Contreras, Robin Adair and now Paul Martin on their efforts to keep the memory of this time in American History alive, in an era when the sacrifices of those who went before us are so easily disparaged or forgotten.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.