Hellenic Air Force Museum Exhibits
De Havilland Tiger Moth D.H. 82
The British-built D.H. 82 Tiger Moth (first flight: October 1931) has been one of the most famous training aircraft, having provided the first contact with the air for thousands of aviators around the globe.
During the 2nd World War it was the main training aircraft of the Allies.
Douglas C-47 B (Dakota)
The museum’s C-47 was one of the 1900 aircraft of the type to have been received by the RAF under the name “Dakota” during the 2nd World War. It is not yet known how this particular aircraft arrived in Greece after the war. However, it is known that it received a VIP interior and has been used for the transportation of VIPs and highly ranked officers. This aircraft’s last flight was on March, 1st 1991, when it landed on the museum’s runway.
Bristol Blenheim Mk IV F
The museum’s Blenheim Mk.IV F belonged to the 203 Squadron, whose aircraft were based in Crete and covered the British withdrawal from the island. It was accidentally hit by a British torpedo boat and crashed near the sea of Rethymno on April, 28th 1941. The three-member crew was saved by an unknown man from Crete, who fell to the sea to offer his help. The aircraft was brought to the surface and moved to the museum on summer 1996 by a mixed team composed of members of HAF’s special team of frogmen and museum experts.
Supermarine Spitfire Mk IXc
This particular Spitfire (MJ 755) was built at the Castle Bromwich factory and was delivered to RAF’s 43rd Squadron in August 1944, which at the time was covering the operations in Southern France. After taking part in the war in Northern Italy, it was handed over to the Hellenic Air Force on February 1947. In Greece, two cameras were fitted to the fuselage and it was used as a reconnaissance aircraft. Its last flight was on September 1953 and it was moved to the museum during spring 1995.
North American T-6 G (Harvard)
The Hellenic Air Force used many variations of the T-6, both British- and American-built models. During the 2nd World War Greek pilots were trained using British-built Harvard Mk.Is at aviation academies in Rhodesia. After 1946 British-built Harvard Mk.IΙ Α/Β, Mk.IIIs were received along with American-built Τ-6D/Gs. Since 1947 the T-6D/G had been used as the main training aircraft of the Hellenic Air Force Academy, up until 1969 when it was redrawn from use.
Curtiss Helldiver SB2C-5
In Greece the first Helldivers arrived as part of the US aid in spring 1949. They became part of the 336 Squadron and were utilized during the final battles of the period 1947-1949.
The museum’s Helldiver was formerly at the Athens War Museum and has been restored to its current state since November 1997. It is a very rare type of aircraft, as it is believed that only five examples of the type still exist, remaining scattered around the world (USA, France, Thailand).
The museum’s polish-built MiG-15 wears the emblems of Colonel Yeygeni Pepelyiaev’s personal aircraft. The Colonel was one of the Soviet pilots who voluntarily flew aircraft with the North Korean national emblems during the war in Korea, and has been one of the war’s best pilots, having shot down 23 aircraft belonging to the allied forces during 101 missions. This particular aircraft formerly belonged to the Royal Netherlands’ Air Force Museum and was obtained through exchange. It was initially built in Poland as a reconnaissance aircraft, known under the name Lim 2Rbis.
Canadair CL-13 Mk2 (F-86 E)
Undoubtedly the western world’s top fighter aircraft during the 50’s, the F-86 owes its creation to the pioneering German research on aerodynamics during the end of the 2nd World War. Canadian-built F-86E(M)s became the HAF’s first jet-powered fighter aircraft. 110 examples were delivered, which served the HAF from 1954 until 1965. The most famous ones were those forming the “Hellenic Flame” aerobatics team, which took part in aviation shows in Greece and abroad, receiving commendatory comments for their pilots’ abilities. One of the museum’s three examples of the type has been rebuilt with the characteristic colours and the emblem of that team.
Canadair CL-13 Mk2 (F-86 E)
A second F-86E(M) represents US Captain Joseph McConnell’s F-86F aircraft. Captain McConnell was regarded as the United Nations’ best chasing aircraft pilot during the war in Korea, having shot down 16 enemy aircraft during 106 missions. The museums’ example wears the exact colours that Captain Mc Connells’ aircraft wore when it was officially presented to the press on May, 19th 1953, one day after its last mission.
More than 100 F-84Fs were gradually delivered to Greece. The first examples arrived in 1957 to assume the role of HAFs main striking aircraft, previously held by the F-84Gs. The last F-84Fs were withdrawn from use in 1984.
Lockhead F-104G “TIGER”
Three F-104Gs and one two-seat TF-104G belong to the museum at the moment. Two of the F-104Gs have been painted in the spectacular “Tiger” and “Olympos” liveries. These special colours have been applied to celebrate 50 years since the formation of the 335 and 336 Squadrons, to which those aircraft belonged.
The Gulfstream I was an elegant low-wing aircraft, powered by two Turboprop Rolls Royce Dart engines, which first flew in 1958. The single example ever to have flown in Greece was purchased for the needs of the royal family of the time in 1964. It had been considered as the most modern aircraft in its category for many years after its inauguration. After 1967 it had been used from the HAF as a VIP aircraft, but it was withdrawn from use after its maintenance was considered uneconomical, due to the fact that it was the only example of the type. Its last flight took place in October 1995, when it arrived at the museum.
Dodge WC 54 ambulance
The Hellenic Air Force received various Dodge vehicles through the British forces in the Middle East (1941-1944), whose exact types and numbers remain unknown. Many WC 54 ambulance vehicles like the one present at the museum have been used after the war and up until the 70’s. This particular example is painted according to the 1950 regulation concerning the means of transport of the Royal Hellenic Air Force and accurately represents the form of HAF’s vehicles in the 50’s.
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