Gary Velasco beside the finished re-paint of "No Guts - No Glory
The L-39 at CHO, VA. as it is now newly painted black.
The first design for production is the B-1 "Lets Roll" clock. Decals also sold seperatly
Gary Velasco during the 'Belle' project.
The finished nose of Tallichet's 'Belle'
Gary and Marge Bong Drucker during the signing.
Tom Ferebee, Gary Velasco and Paul Tibbets after the signing Nov. 22,'98
Last updated Jan 2, 2016
Now all Major Credit Cards
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2016 is our 20th Anniversary!
Thank you all again for making 2015 our best year so far. The new year begins with our 20th Anniversary producing the finest nose art panels, full size hull sections, tails and more. There is a lot of new exciting things coming in this new year including Gary doing more nose art on restored warbirds. To keep track and follow Gary's daily projects, click on the Face Book logo to see the latest in goings on and say hello...
Art of WarBirds promo concept Video
We're proud to announce the premier of Velasco's newest video promo, albeit this time its a more glossed over production consentrated on a conceptual narrative on how Velasco illustrates his emotional sense into his work in this business. Aptly titled, "I See Ghosts" takes the viewer into the realm of his more celebrated nose art restoration works mixed with actual vets and WWII re-enactors.. Set your player's viewing setting to HD to get in the best resolution. Click on above screen shot to link.'
The newly founded Erickson Aircraft Collection (formally the Tillamook Aviation Museum) has moved the bulk of its rare aircraft collection over to Madras were the climate will insure the preservation of some 25 flying warbirds.. One of which is Erickson's latest acquisition, the B-17G formally known as "Chuckie". It was decided that due to the airfield in Madras served as a B-17 training base during WWII, "Madras Maiden" was the chosen name to best make the bomber a flying emissary and tribute to the city's support in the war effort.
The unveilling took place on August 21, 2014 with much fanfare including the model Hope Beel,who was used for the pinup. Be sure to see upcoming media coverage on this project including a time lapse of the nose art being created. We'll post that here and on our facebook page once it becomes available. Thank you to accomplished aviation photographer's Lyle Jansma instumentally, and Scott Slocum for their dedication to make this happen.
Announcing NEW Aviation Shelves for 2014
As part of our new functional art line we have designed a set of Aviation themed shelves in thre sizes; 24"X7" ($149.00), 36"X10"($225.00) and 48"X12" ($325.00). "This will compliment our nose art panels in any setting whether it be an office, restaurant or man cave. We have begun on designing more aviation themed futniture for those on a budget" said Velasco.. Other products in the design stage is a Pub Height table that will debut and unveilled at this year's EAA Airventure.
Exclusive! Mercury MA-7 Aurora 7 "Shingle" panel
For the first time ever, an elaborate full size replica of a "shingle" panel from the Mercury Aurora 7 space capsule is in production and working on a Limited Edition Series signed by Astronaut Scott Carpenter. In the meantime, the open end production version is available as shown complete with brass laser etched data plate all mounted on a cherry framed hardwood plaque. "We are very proud to make this available to the public as nothing like it has ever been offered in the open market" said Velasco. Introductory pricing is at $850.00..
New "Victory" C.U.E. Ball Challenge Coins
A Fighting Colors Challenge coin has been minted dubed the "C.U.E. Ball" (Citizens United Emblem) to compliment the new mens Tee shirts and Ladies pink camo tank tops with the same emblem. Call to ask about the symbolism behind the design or see on our face book page. Coins and shirts are $19.95 each.
CAF Commissions Velasco for B-24 "DIAMOND LIL" nose art
We're proud to announce that Velasco was chosen to render the third re-incarnation of the world's oldest and one of two flying B-24s in the world., DIAMOND LIL. Photos of this and other high profile prject can be seen on Face Book. Click on the icon above to view,
P-51 "KWITCHERBITCHIN" in air
Velasco has done another P-51 this time in 506th FG markings. It is a flying example and is based in NJ and will be seen actively in the air show circuit for 2012 and beyond.
OSHKOSH EAA Air Venture Show
Velasco to donate B-24 Hull section for live auction
We are excited by our first ever attendance as an exhibitor/vendor at Oshkosh this year. Along with unveiling to the public our B-24 Tail Executive desk, we are donating our prototype Full Size B-24 Hull section to benefit the EAA Young Eagles Assoc.. this will be a feature at the auction and can be seen at our booth for review. The auction begins July 7 so check out EAA.org to begin bidding on a one-of-a-kind item.
We can be found in Hangar A, booths 1153 &1154
Testimonials and Accolades
A new page was added to share some of the many email and "letters of thanks" we get often. These help us to believe that we make a difference in connecting generations past/present and future...Check it out here.
We are proud to announce that our latest creation, a B-24 Corporate Tail desk is now available! At 1/2 scale, it is 6' 1" Long x 43" wide and will be offered in a variety of paint schemes. That is Historical Bomb Group markings, Insignia, corporate Logos or finished in a polished aluminum mirror finish.
The riser supports will be painetd in a Zinc Chromate green and or yellow to give the appearance of aircraft interior structures. The contruction is similar to that of our full size hull section. Multiple parts incuding ribs and formes are fabrcated as the skeletal sub structure and the outer skin rivited to the surface or desk top all of which will be crowned by a 3/8" tempered glass top in the shape of the oval tail .
Click on the promo photo for the Desk page and info.
The Commemorative Air Forces (CAF) headquartered in Midland, TX., has asked Gary Velasco to replicate all 33 of its hull section nose art panels that were cut from salvaged bombers after WWII to promote their Nose Art collection and to sell in the CAF gift shop. The original panels have been restored and are on display in the CAF Airpower Museum's Noe Art Gallery also located in Midland, TX.
Four new panel designs will be added per quarter. The first four panels to be replicated are *B-24 "SACK TIME", *B-24 "Surprise Attack", B-24 "Night Mission" and B-17 "RUM + COKE". "They will be sold as an "Exclusive"(except *) for the museum to promote the "Save the Girls" TM fundraising efforts which helps maintain the real panels on display" said Velasco. The project to sell the replicated panels has been discussed for several years and recent changes including a tremendous effort to promote and market the CAF Airpower Museum to the public has finally allowed the project to move forward. Photos of the new panels will be posted here in the next weeks to come.
We are planning big things for 2010 and will reveal a couple of Full size panels/hull sections to compliment the B-24J hull section already in production for clients. So be on the look out for them this year..
As part of the newly formed VANDY-1 Jet Demo Team, Velasco will head up the Marketing and Merchandising as Director creating designs and the image for the team brand. The team will partner and represnt the Wounded Warrior Project at select air shows accepting donations on WWP behalf to help with the care and rehabilitation of wounded members of our armed forces. VANDY-1 and the Wounded Warrior Project will be appearing at multiple airshows and fund raising events throughout the show season. Make sure you stop by and see us and help support this great organization that helps those who keep us free.
An alliance has formed with Velasco and CHO to produce "Retirement" panels for the Executives and employees as they retire.
From our vault comes a Special "Set" of Limited Edition P-47 Cowl and Fuselage panels signed by 21.5 Victory 56th FG Ace Col Fred Christensen. These panels were signed back in 2000 and only 5 sets were ever made. Check out the more details in the Limited Edition page.
Also new are some very nice Customs added to that page as well as new panels to the "Retirement" page.
For our F-4 Phantom II fans is our first - SPUNKY VI found in our "Post WWI" page.
Presenting our first edition of P-61 panels; "VIRGIN WIDOW". These will feature a multiple panel construction faithfully re-creating the P-61 nose section.
Gunther Rall has signed a Ltd Ed number of panel plates the will be a part of a new ongoing Signature Series. The panel is from our "Relic Series" and will have serials stamped into the metal with COA documentation. The panel will retail for $499.00.
B-24J Fuselage Hull Section has arrived!!
The time has finally come to unveil our new project. Its two plus years in the making is now a reality. You will see the progress of its final assembly revealed here in the next couple of weeks. "I am extremely excited about this Exclusive project that will ultimately be our Flagship product" Velasco stated. They will feature the same high standard level of art work in all its "Full Scale" glory. All of its parts; Stringers, Formers and skin has been blueprinted and CADed so that we can now produce an unlimited number of these nose hull sections complete with nose art you choose. There is an optional display stand (pictured) or it can hung from any wall.
Video of the project added.
The Exhibit is now currently on display for the summer. The airport is working with Gary to host an artist reception tenatively in July for 4th of July (details forthcoming in the next few days) to unveil Velasco's full-scaled B-24 Hull sculpture "SWEET ROUTINE" that will be the focal point of his "Victory" Collection which along with a dozen plus smaller panels that will be exhibited there for three months.
"This will be an exciting event for us in that it will be our first ever featured art exhibit gallery anywhere," said Velasco. Airport address and info can be found at; www.gocho.com
On another note, we are expecting our new brochure catalogs any day now. They are much larger with a whole new high-end glossy image look that will give the company a much deserved "Museum" quality appearence reminiscent of Auto manufactuers car brochures. Thanks to Zach and Allen from Creative Think Tank CC for their creative expertise.
Air Classics cover features B-25 TONDELAYO
The current Air Classics issue features the Collings Foundation's B-25 TONDELAYO nose art painted by Gary Velasco some 7 years ago. The story details the history of this particular B-25 and how it ended up as we see it today. It was a nice surprise to see this. Thanks Michael O'leary at www.challengeweb.com.
For full story and photos on how Velasco did this project, scroll down until you come accross the link story.
A very busy 2nd quarter for 2009 begining with a Ltd Ed B-25 RUPTURED DUCK Doolittle signed panels. We have successfully done a long awaited panel signing with Doolittle Co-Pilot Col Dick Cole (crew #1) and Navigator Maj Thomas Griffin (crew #9). The signing occurred on the anniversary of D-Day, June 6th. The signed Edition total of 281 panels represent the total personel supporting the Raiders mission on April 18, 1942.
Legendary F-14 pilot Capt Dale Snodgrass Endorses Velasco P-40 Shirt
When Velasco approached Capt Dale "Snort" Snodgrass about his new Aloha P-40 shirt design for a possible endorsement, "I love that shirt, I wear it all the time" said Snodgrass. So we arranged a simple photo shoot at Andrews AFB during a show and in front of the East Coast A-10 Demo team Thunderbolt II and the deal is done.
Dale holds the highest flight time hours in an F-14 (over 5,00 hrs and 1,200 plus carrier landings) considered the most experienced F-14 pilot in the world.
At the end of "Desert Storm" then Commander Snodgrass was promoted to Navy Captain and was selected to command all F-14 Tomcats in the US Navy.
Capt Snodgrass joins a very small select group of pilots that are allowed to fly with active duty modern fighters at air shows throughout North America and Europe. He is the only pilot in the world approved to fly in both the U.S. Air Force Herritage Flight Program and the Navy Legacy Flight Program.
He also consulted for the Jerry Bruckheimer movie TOP GUN which is loosly based on his exploits.
Get yours today here.
New F-14 nose art panel
We're proud to announce that a new F-14 design is available as "FLIR CAT". The first will be a "Give away Prize" for the new MicroSoft Flight Sim game www.TOPGUNSIM.com that features Capt Dale "Snort" Snodgrass. A special LTD ED Signature Series version will follow in the future.
Capt Snodgrass flew this F-14 on several occaisions for evaluation approval for the FLIR system.
New Retirement Series for Military personel
Due to popular demand we now offer custom shop designed panels to fit the requirements of those who have been promoted, re-assigned or retired from active duty. They come in a variety of shapes and designs based on actual aircraft flown to commemorate their tour of duty or service career. Click here to see the page.
Velasco has been commissioned by Big Boss Brewing to design and produce a series of 12 panels for their standard and sesonal beers. The nose art panels are based on historical bombers and will have matching labels for the bottles. Based in NC., owner Geoff Lamb is very pleased with the first two in the series and will proudly display them in the Brewery. Keep a look out for this Micro-Brewery as they expand their distribution. We've sampled the brew, a great product reminiscent of Sam Adams Beer.
TMC Pacific Modelworks Counterfeit panels
We have terminated our relationship with TMC Pacific Modelworks AKA - Pacific Aircraft, AKA - Warplanes.com due to the fact they have been and are currently selling unauthorized copy panels made in the Philippines where their wood models are manufactured. Efforts are being made to stop this and possible legal action is imminent. In addition we have seen and issued Cease and desist orders to others that have used Ebay as a tool for selling copies. There is a difference in the quality and are being passed off as Velasco shop originals. If you have purchased a panel from any one of these companies and question its authenticity, here are a few things to look for in a Velasco panel.
1. On the reverse of every panel is our company hallmark stamped into the metal. A triangle containing upswept wings.
2. A 2 inch square "Made in USA" label adhered next to the hallmark.
3. Actual paint brush lines in the glossy painted artwork. The counterfeits are not as glossy and all art is sprayed on using templates except for small names.
If you have seen or suspect copy panels being sold anywhere, please inform us so that we can take proper action to put a stop to the counterfeiting. (email; email@example.com)
We will be attending the Gathering of Mustangs and Legends Air Show as an Exhibitor/Vendor. The event is on September 27-30 and will have over 100 P-51s on the flight line!!! Some 50+ ace WWII pilots like Donald Strait (356FG), Bud Anderson (357FG), Dick Hewett (78FG) who will be at our booth and Frank Spears (4FG) along with many more. In conjunction with the event there will be an auction which we are donating two special show panels. You will have a chance to win one signed by the pilot!
For more info on this once in a lifetime show visit; www.gml2007.com
SEE YOU THERE........
We have finally begun with our new brand of High Quality long sleeved shirts. To start, they are printed on various camo patterns. The first design features a B-25 with its nose art colorized over a styeized V for Victory that is highlighted. There are two other aircraft featured in future designs for winter.
Also we are announcing that our first Licensed shirt with Max Boxxer.com is now out on the racks. This is a unique Aloha Hawiian shirt that is printed fabric, not a screened design. So it will last forever. It features the famed AVG nose art work in tradition and format as our Flying Tigers panels. This is an exclusive design that no one else makes. They have done extremely well at air shows and are literally flying off the racks. Be sure to pick one up.
Click here for info and photos
P-47 "No Guts - No Glory gets cleaned up
Recently, after painting TAKE-OFF TIME, Gary returned to "freshen up" the nose art on Tom Duffy's historic P-47 NO GUTS - NO GLORY. The markings were faded and chipped so Velasco re-painted the elements back to its original look as it appeared on the 78th fighter Group's P-47 flown by Capt Mayo.
Click here for photos of the paint process.
Warbird owner enthusiast Tom Duffy commissioned Gary Velasco to spruce up his B-25 which had a Green Dragon previously. "I like the old-time pin-ups and Gary is the best for this stuff" said Duffy. The nose art was chosen after extensive consideration given Duffy did not want to do a full-blown paint scheme at this time. Its first ais show appearence will be at THUNDER OVER MICHIGAN in two weeks. It is said to have over 25 B-25s present.
Click here for photos of the paint process.
L-39 to get a "Bunny" tail for Amercan Top Guns TV show
has been commissioned for a special TV show project that
will feature an L-39 in the markings of VX-9 "Vandy
1" which will include a Playboy Bunny tail code insignia
on the all black plane. There will be other special markings
present. This is one 5 aircraft which will be painted in
special "show" markings.
Link here or click on the photo for the painting progress and Roll-out of this L-39.
A-10 panel Finally here
The long awaited production A-10 panel is now available. The first in this series is the 23rd Fighter Group markings based at Pope AFB. The familliar markings are the direct decendants from the famed AVG Flying Tigers. This 6 piece panel is one of our largest measuring 43" x 21.5".
We're happy to announce that Paidas Management has signed Gary Velasco to become our Official licensing agent for our Fighting Colors Victory Collection merchandise. To begin this program, a line of nose art related T-Shirts, caps and assorted mens and women apparel will be on the market in time for the holidays. The expansion of the program in the near future will include other assorted brand imprinted merchandise with the feel and spirit of Velasco's nose art collection that will go to "Direct Mass", meaning that distributors will place the products in retailers such as TARGET, Walmart and Sears. "I am excited about this opportunity to expand beyond the current boundaries of our market" said Gary Velasco. Jim Paidas has put OCC's AMERICAN CHOPPERS and Boyd Cottington's AMERICAN HOT RODS (to name a few) on the top of the branding merchandising list. We look forward to doing the same and a successful relationship.
For Licensing inquiries contact Jim Paidas at 203-426-5458 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The Delaware ANG commissioned Velasco for an F-86 restoration project that will be mounted on a pole in the entrance of the grounds. This is a complete re-paint from the ground-up in accordance to Mil. Spec. There is a lot of markings including nose art. Velasco will begin on Sept. 23 and will post photos of the progress here until completion. The dedication is set for October 12, 2006.
A page has been set up to see the progress as it nears completion. View the photos.
We're excited to announce that the BLUE ANGELS and USAF THUNDERBIRD panels are ready. We are currently working with the squadrons to get these beautiful panels marketed as Official merchandise so they can be made available at their appearences. This way buyers can have them autographed and instantly become collectors items.
"The F-16 tail was the obvious choice for this (THUNDERBIRDS) panel because of its markings. We tried different panels but the tail worked best", said Velasco. As for the F-18, an existing nose fuselage panel seemed fitting because the emblem and BLUE ANGEL name was where the actual panel is on and not to confuse with the F-16 panel.
The panels will reside in the POST WWII page or click on photo link to take you there. Pricing is very reasonable at introductory period of; F-16 TB $175.00 and the F-18 BA $155.00.
Boeing rep Dick Ziegler heads up the B-29 DOC restoration project and contacted Gary to do a special display for the 2005 winter ICAS convention. Velasco re-constructed a 22x9 foot section of a B-29 fuselage topped by a replica panel of the DOC nose art. "I never had the opportunity to be at an ICAS convention. It was fun and a worthwlile experience meeting all the industry people and impressed on how well they knew of me and my work" Velasco said. The complete restoration will be the second worlds only flying B-29. It should be back in the air (hopefully) later this year or early 07 for the airshow season.
The well known and 'Up and comming' toy manufacturer 21st Century Toys, has commissioned Velasco for their latest promo campaigns. Known for their huge 1:18 scale toy planes, a new line of 'Special Edition' releases in limited quantities are in production. The first of these is an Me-109 in ace Gunther Rall's markings. What makes this line so special is that the box art is completely photographed from our Me-109 Rall panel! Yep! They took our Rall panel and turned it into their box! They also put a photo of the panel on the back of the box with credits. "The detail is amazing" said Velasco admiring the many moving parts like the rudder, elevators, flaps, ailerons, gear, leading edge slats, canopy and prop. The other Special Edition box art will feature our P-51 Big Beautiful Doll panel with the same treatment due to be released in December. "We're excited to work with Gary on this idea since both products have a natural cross-promotional fit and its what the fans want" said Zach Sharples, Senior Art Director for 21stC. The Die-cast company Corgi has also used our panels to promote the new Nose Art line of 1:72 scale planes at conventions. The other promo is a small FW 190 'Relic' panel for their latest contest winners. A limited number of 10 were made with stamped serials and bullet holes. More details on their website. We will have some of these beautiful models for sale also. These will be in limited quantities, so inquire in a timely manor for your Special Edition model.
NEW! Limited Edition Artist Signature Series panels
After a long anticipated wait, the first in this series is here. It was officially unvieled publicly in the recent May issue of PLAYBOY Magazine. HEAVENLY BODY, a B-24 from the 90th Bomb Group was ultimately chosen to help promote Velasco's book which happens to be the cover. The Ltd. Ed. Artist Series panels will be Velasco's favorite picks and be the most elaborate of all. Along with them all being signed by Velasco, they will include serial numbers stamped into the metal and come with a special COA. The panel is available for $625.00.
Warthog fans will look forward to seeing in the next month an exciting A-10A panel. A six-piece multi panel that accurately replicates the left nose section of the Thunderbolt II. We will be posting photos in the next few weeks.
WING NUTS is Discovery Channel's newest show featuring the company Moto Art that refurbishes old vintage aircraft parts into furniture. You may already have seen this show airing on Tuesdays at 10pm on the Discovery Channel. We have now been commissioned to produce Limited Edition nose art on actual various B-25 access panels and skin provided by Dave Hall of Moto Art. There are two designs so far to choose from and can only be purchased exclusivly from Moto Art.
NEW Nose Art Book for '04 has arrived !!!!!
There will be a follow-up book featuring B-29s only. "There is so many photos that I decided to just create another volume on the Superfortress. It will contain some 850 photos of B-29 nose art many in color".
On October 4th, 2003, Velasco was invited to meet the crew of the Discovery Channel's hit TV show AMERICAN CHOPPERS. Being a fan of the show,Velasco designed and presented a panel for Orange County Choppers in recognition for their aviation themed bikes. The panel was designed with the characteristics, nuances and attitude from the show in mind. HELLZAPPOPIN' was chosen to be the best name for the panel and sums up the show's rousing sentiment. Incorporated within the design was a rear tire and the letter Z was rendered as the exhaust pipe. Replacing mission bombs are the sword OCC logos, one for each theme bike. Wings off the tire represents the aviation theme and lastly, the fuselage code letters OC*C round out the completed design. "Its amazing to see the bikes in person. The show with all its attention to detail, still does not capture the crafted art involved in the finished product. I'm grateful that Paul Sr. and Paul Jr. took the time from taping the show to meet me". During his presentation, Gary gave a brief history on the origins of nose art along with showing them some examples of Gary's personal nose art photos that will be featured in his forthcoming book. Visit OCC at www.orangecountychoppers.com
NEW! Aviation Wall Clocks and Decals
After a long wait and
postponements, we are proud to announce that a spin-off of
our panels will be in the form of Aviation Wall Clocks. The
first of these clocks in production will be the Official
USAF nose art "Let's Roll" to Commemorate 9-11 in a B-1 camo
scheme. They are a three piece 16"x16" panel with a quartz
movement. A complete page devoted to the clocks is currently
being developed with five catgories (see clocks page), USAF,
USMC, USN, US Army, Corporate/Commercial. Intro pricing is
Limited Edition Artist Signature Series panels
It has been decided that an Artists Signature Series line be developed for the first quarter of 2003. The second will be "TONDELAYO", a B-25 from the 345BG . The second will be a B-24 yet to be determined. These panels, much like our other Ltd. Ed. Series will feature elaborate art work chosen personally, painted and signed by Gary Velasco. The panels will have serial numbers stamped into the aluminum and a COA.
A new page has been set up to see what goes into making a panel design from scratch-to-finish. This can be seen by clicking on to this TOUR LINK.
The Corsair Gathering is now but a memory. It turned out to be eventful and busy, with representing the company at our booth next to the Black Sheep tables. Even though 8 corsairs participated, there were many more warbirds on hand . The focal point was the Black Sheep reunion and most likley to be their last although some will appear in future airshows. The Friday night dinner/symposium was sold out with some 650 attendees. "A great nite. I got to meet actors Red West, Jeff McKay and Robert Ginty of TV series Baa Baa Black Sheep fame" said Gary Velasco. During the dinner, a silent auction was held and Velasco donated two Boyington panels that sold for over $900.00 each! The show benefited the Riley Hospital for Children. Artist Jim Laurier ad Gary had a lot in common and instantly became good friends. Click on thumbnails at left for larger image.
The Collings Foundation based in Stow, MA. commissioned Gary to apply the nose art on their B-25 in the markings of TONDALAYO, from the 345BG, 500BS known as the "Air Apaches". The work started on sunday August 11 and was completed wednesday the 14th. An in depth story about this famous a/c along with photos of the painting process can be seen by ckicking here.
New LTD. ED. F4F Foss panel for Pacific Aircraft
We are proud to announce that we will produce a Limited Edition F4F Joe Foss panel exclusively for Pacific Aircraft (warplanes.com). The panels are signed by Joe Foss, the highest scoring USMC Ace and Medal of Honor winner. In addition the panels will have actual full size gold Aviator Wings attached. These panels can only be purchased at Pacific Aircraft. For more info on obtainig a panel click on the link [WARPLANES.COM] or call 800-950-9944.
The New England Air Museum (home of the 58BW Assoc.) in Hartford, CT. is undergoing a restoration of a B-29 to static condition. They have commissioned Gary Velasco to do the Nose Art and photos of that process can be seen by clicking on the link.
In light of the tragedy by terroist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, I believe that justice will avenge and prevail thru the strength of unity in America.
To help with the morale in the tradition of Nose Art, we are developing a special patriotic F-22 panel with art work appropriate for the ongoing air campaign. We researched this panel as best as we could with out having access to the aircraft (still being tested). This is from a panel on the lower right side of the a/c. The panel is 31x14" and will retail for $145.00
The 352FG held their last and final reunion on Sept. 21-25 in Richmond, VA. We were invited to attend the festivities and two P-51 Mustangs were on display along with a specially painted F-16 to commemorate the group. A ballroom dinner dance with a program was Saturday evening. Filming by Split/S was done for a documentary plus lots more. We set up a photo page from this event.The public is invited as well. For more info, visit the 352FG website. We will have on hand a small Limited run of 5 P-51 352FG "Cripes A'Mighty" panels and 5 "Cripes A' Mighty 3rd panels w/signatures. If you would like one, please reserve one today. Call for info.
On May 29, Memorial day, We attended their reunion in San Antonio, TX. at the Riverview Marriott Hotel. The 100 panels represented is of the then Lt. Col. Thomas L. Hayes "Frenesi". Unfortunately Hayes could not attend and arrangements were made to acquire his signature at a latter date. In addition to the 357th panel, Yeager also signed 8 X-1 panels and are now available for $275.00. The 357th panel is available for $675.00.
On March 16, 2000 Tom Ferebee 81,passed away at his home in Windermere, Florida. Ferebee and his crew mates made history when the B-29 Enola Gay flew to Hiroshima and delivered the first atomic bomb on 6 August,1945 that would help end the war with Japan during WWII. Ferebee was the Bombardier on that mission. He will be missed by all who knew and read of him. His final mission is unknown...
Lockheed Martin Skunk Works and Velasco Ent. have teamed up and allowed us to produce Blackbird tail art exclusively for LMSW. The first in a series of three, a/c # 17955 "Willie" the skunk is now available. Two versions are available, a painted version and a decaled one. The second will be a NASA version (available Feb. 2K) and the third will be a unit insignia (available Mar. 2K). A Limited Edition with test pilots signatures is also being planned. All panels will be available only thru the LMSW Gift store.
Movie "Memphis Belle" repainted
Gary Velasco called upon to 'finish the job' on Tallichet's B-17. Originally, Velasco was supposed to paint the Nose Art and markings on the air show circuit's Flying Fortress, but Ron Kaplan, known for leather jacket art work, outbid Velasco and only painted the girl and name on both sides (great job Ron). The mission markings, kills, squadron codes, numbers, names, stencils, wheels and insignia's was done by Velasco. Mark Scott, project manager for Tallichet will shuttle Velasco via Cessna 172 from Bridgeport, CT. to the site at Lawrence Airport in N. Andover, MA..Velasco also has been commissioned by the group to detail with Nose Art a B-25 owned by Tallichet. More on that later. Work was done July 24-Aug. 5, 1999. More photos and story of the painting can be seen by clicking on Belle painting.
Sept 9-12, '99
We're proud to announce that Marge Bong Drucker has agreed to join ranks and signed 100 Limited Edition Signature Series P-38 "Marge" Bong panels. She appeared on September 11 at the Sheraton Four Points Hotel in Norwalk, CT. A live TV appearance on Ch 12's Fairfield Exchange Fri, Sept.10 at 12 noon went well. The panels will be an exclusive product for the Richard I. Bong WWII Heritage Center and proceeds from sales will help fund the new museum in Superior, WI. A pencil print depicting Bong and Marge is available as well.
Nov. 21 and 22 '98
In addition to our Limited Edition Series, we've added the B-29 panel "Enola Gay" to our lineup with a limited production run of 50.
On November 9, 1996, the Connecticut Post newspaper covered the story of the partial restoration of an F4U Corsair mounted on a pedistal at the Sikorsky Memorial Airport in Stratford, Ct. Actually it is a Goodyear built FG-1D donated back to the United States from the El Salvador Air Force in 1969. The project was headed up by Gary Velasco appointed by the Greater Bridgeport Detachment Marine Corps League. After researching all available references,Velasco decided to repaint the aircraft in the markings of famed VMF-214 "Black Sheep" squadron, Maj. Gregory "Pappy" Boyington.
On May 22-26, 1997 and June 25-27, 1998, Velasco Enterprises hosted reunions of VMF-214 Black Sheep Squadron as well as several Special guests.
The Sikorsky Brothers lead a VIP tour of Sikorsky Aircraft (which did not allow cameras) where Henry Bourgeois flew in the "Blackhawk" simulator. After a hearty luncheon the group reminised through the assembly line to witness the 2nd Commanche "Stealth" helicopter during its final assembly stage.
The highlight of the tour was entering the office of Igor Sikorsky, where Sergei Sikorsky proceded to lecture on his father's goals and achievments which included handeling correspondence from the likes of Charles Lindbergh, Ace Richard Bong and test pilot Boone Guyton.
A VIP tour of Pratt & Whitney was arranged the following year with the same hospitable VIP treatment.
In the next series of photos, you'll see who was present at the events.
Muriel and Jim Hill, Julie and Robert McClurg, "Gabby" Gabreski, Nikolai and Igor Sikorsky Jr..Kneeling is Marine Corp Corsair pilot Stan Kelly.
Jim Hill, Robert McClurg and Henry Bourgeois of VMF -214 stand in front of "Sky Boss" flown by the late Bill Dodds for Averix. Note: Dodds untimely death occured two weeks after this event. See below left.
Gary Velasco, Robert Morgan, Robert Conrad, James Verinis, Henry Bourgeois and Jim Conroy Director of the Greenwich Workshop Galleries in Fairfield, Ct.
Elizabeth and Igor Sikorsky Jr. with Robert Conrad at the "Hangin' with the Warbirds" Dinner dance honoring VMF-214 and "Memphis Belle" crew in June 1998, Bridgeport, Ct..
Gary Velasco and Robert Conrad at the 'Hangin' with the Warbirds dinner dance.
Mark Scott - Falcon Air
Bob and Linda Morgan
Brent Perkins - Memphis Belle Association
Marge Bong Drucker
Tom Bell & Bernie - Bell Manufacturing
357th Fighter Group
352th Fighter Group
All images © 1998, '99, 2K,2006 Unautherized duplication of images is prohibited by law.