In 1961, mother, dad and I visited brother Harry and his family in St. George, Bermuda where he was stationed at Kindley Air Force Base. I photographed him for a portrait of a pilot. Later, I decided the type plane he flew should be in the background.
“How can I obtain the proper photo of the KC-97 to put in the background?” I wondered out loud.
“Look over the photos I took while in Goose Bay, Labrador on temporary duty in support of the B-47 strike force.” Harry said.
I found one that suited me perfectly and chose Goose Bay as the locale.
This painting was accepted in the 1964 Palo Duro Art Show, sponsored by the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum and the West Texas State University Fine Arts Department, Canyon, Texas.
In 1965, after “Tanker Pilot” was awarded third prize in the oil division, I contacted the United States Air Force Art Program to see if this painting may be suitable to add to their collection. It was, and I was honored by it becoming a part of the permanent Air Force Art Collection.
One never knows where a good idea, developed, will go. The adventure is fascinating; the reward excitingly satisfying.
The Berlin Airlift Historical Foundation, of which I am a member, requested photographs of “Tanker Pilot” and the “Taking on Fuel” paintings for their *C-97 “ANGEL OF DELIVERANCE” Cold War Museum, painted exactly like the C-97 that was used in the Berlin Airlift. Another honor! The request has special meaning for Harry and me. Now my art is airborne!
* Converted from a tanker back to the freighter version so the K is dropped.