I've already mentioned that I did some traveling this week. Well, last night I got back from California. I had made the unexpected trip due to the death of my granddad, whose memorial service was on Tuesday (it was only a few hours after that service that the PA unnecessarily panicked my wife). Between Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, we had known for a while that my granddad wouldn't last much longer, although he had already defied the doctors' predictions by several months.
AD Skyraiders on the USS Boxer (CVA-21). He eventually went on to become a highly respected "resident genius" at a company that specialized in chemical machining of aerospace and nautical components.
Ever since I heard these stories, I've loved the Skyraider; an extremely successful medium attack aircraft. The plane saw service from the late 1940s to the early 1970s and was one of the last piston-engined combat aircraft. A few years ago I had the chance to see a flying AD-4N Skyraider and an A-1E Skyraider at an airshow put on by the Legacy Flight Museum in Rexburg, Idaho. The most memorable moment of the show was its finale in which the missing man formation was performed by the museum's three P-51 Mustangs and its AD-4N Skyraider. The Skyraider represented the missing man as it pulled out of formation. I'm going to guess that the AD-4N was used for that purpose since it was the odd airplane in a group consisting mostly of P-51s. Now that moment seems very appropriate to me personally.