Warplane Survivors USA: Nebraska

Nebraska Warplanes

(National Postal Museum, Curatorial Photographic Collection Photo)

The first airmail field used by the Post Office Department in Omaha, Nebraska was known as Ak-sar-Ben Field (or Nebraska, spelled backwards).  The field was part of the transcontinental flyway between New York City, New York to San Francisco, California.  The airfield was the site of one of the most dramatic events in the early years of the airmail service; pilot Jack Knight's historic flight during a demonstration of night flying.  Due to the limited instrumentation of the time and lack of beacon lighting, flying time was limited by the length of the day.  Knight was originally scheduled to fly just one leg of the first day and night-time transcontinental airmail trip on 22 Feb 1921.  He left North Platte, Nebraska, flying the mail eastward to Omaha, where he arrived well after dark and in the middle of a snowstorm.  Knight was able to land safely at the Omaha field because it was lit by a line of burning gasoline drums placed along the runway.  The relief pilot refused to continue west to Chicago , Illinois through the storm.  Knight volunteered to take the flight.  He took off for Chicago at 2 am with only a road map to guide him over terrain he had not even crossed in daylight hours.  Amazingly, Knight successfully completed the flight into Chicago, winning national applause for his daring feat.  Photo taken ca 1920.

(National Postal Museum, Curatorial Photographic Collection Photo)

The Post Office Department constructed hangars for their use at the Omaha, Nebraska airmail field.  Omaha was part of the transcontinental flyway between New York City, New York to San Francisco, California.  A group of mail airplanes are parked in front of the main hangar.  Most of the craft are Douglas M-3 or M-4 airplanes.  A Boeing Model 40 aircraft is parked at the far right of the photograph.  These aircraft were among those built as part of a search by postal officials for a successor to the de Havilland DH-4B, an airplane that was nicknamed the workhorse of the early airmail service.  Although the Douglas planes were used for airmail service under the Department, the Boeing was not; the one here is with Boeing Air Transport.  Both airplanes were used in the later 1920s by commercial aviation companies.  Photo taken ca 1927.

(USAF Photo)

Lockheed F-80A-1-LO Shooting Star (Serial No. 44-85245), 173d Fighter Squadron, Nebraska Air National Guard, ca 1947.

(USAF Photo)

North American F-86D-40-NA Sabre (Serial No. 52-3653), 173d Fighter-Interceptor Squadron, Nebraska Air National Guard, ca 1957.

 (USAF Photo)

McDonnell RF-4C-25-MC Phantom (Serial No. 65-0859), 173rd Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, Nebraska Air National Guard, ca 1972.

(CMSgt. Don C. Sutherland, USAF Photo)

McDonnell RF-4C Phantom II, 173rd Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, 155th Tactical Reconnaissance Group, Nebraska Air National Guard, being maintained during "Reconnaissance Air Meet '86", November 1986.

(Alain Rioux Photo)

McDonnell RF-4C Phantom II (Serial No. 65-0917), Nebraska Air National Air National Guard, ca 1992.

(Senior Master Sgt. Lee Straube, USAF Photo)

McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet flown by the U.S. Navy Blue Angels is refueled by a Nebraska Air National Guard KC-135R Stratotanker aircraft over Nebraska on 24 Sep 2006.

(TSgt. Mike Moore, USAF Photo)

Boeing KC-135R Stratotanker (Serial No. 59-1495), 173rd Air Refueling Squadron, 155th Air Refueling Wing, Nebraska Air National Guard, refuels Mcdonnell Douglas F-15C Eagle fighters from the 19th Fighter Squadron from Elmendorf Air Force Base over Alaska during excercise "Northern Edge '96", 1996.

(Mike Freer - Touchdown-aviation Photo)

Boeing RC-135U Combat Sent (Serial No. 61-4847), of the 55th Strategic Reconaissance Wing, Offutt AFB Nebraska,

(Mike Freer - Touchdown-aviation Photo)

Boeing RC-135W Rivet Joint (Serial No. 62-4139), of the 55th Strategic Reconaissance Wing, Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska, 1985.

(Mike Freer - Touchdown-aviation Photo)

Boeing EC-135A Looking Glass (Serial No. 63-0048), of the 7th Airborne Command and Control Squadron, 55th Wing, Offutt AFB, Nebraska, 1998.

(Mike Freer - Touchdown-aviation Photo)

Boeing EC-135C Looking Glass (Serial No. 63-0054), of the 7th Airborne Command & Control Squadron, 55th Wing, Offutt AFB, Nebraska, 23 May 1997

(Senior Airman Mary Thach, Nebraska Air National Guard Photo)

Airmen and soldiers from the Nebraska National Guard push two UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters onto a C-17 from the Missouri Air National Guard's 172nd Airlift Wing.  The Missouri ANG transported the helicopters and soldiers from the 135th General Support Aviation Battalion to Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska, for training 10 Apr 2013, at the 155th Air Refueling Wing.

(Spc. Lisa Crawford, Nebraska Air National Guard Photo)

Nebraska Army National Guard's 1-367th Aviation Regiment (Security and Support) move the blades of three Nebraska UH-72 Lakota helicopters in together to make more space for other aircraft, 12 Sep 2017.

The purpose of this handbook is to provide aviation enthusiasts with a simple checklist on where to find the surviving retired military aircraft that are preserved in the state of Nebraska. The majority of the Nebraska Warbird Survivors found in this book can be viewed at the Strategic Air and Space Museum near Omaha. Aircraft displayed include a Lockheed SR-71, B-52 Stratofortress, B-17 Flying Fortress, B-29 Superfortress, B-36J Peacemaker, and the B-58 Hustler. Aircraft displayed as gate guardians at Nebraska Air National Guard installations and in a number of cities throughout the state are also listed, including an RF-84 Thunderjet, a Corsair II, and an A-4 Skyhawk.

The museum staffs and volunteer organizations in Nebraska have done a particularly good job of preserving the great variety of American combat veteran aircraft, illustrated here. Hopefully, as more aircraft are recovered from their crash sites and restored, traded or brought back from private owners, they too will be added to the record. The book lists the aircraft alphabetically by manufacturer, number and type. This list is also appended with a brief summary of the aircraft presently on display within the state and a bit of its history in the US military.

Order book: http://bookstore.iuniverse.com/Products/SKU-000014264/Nebraska-Warbird-Survivors-2002.aspx

Order book in Canada: http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/Nebraska-Warbird-Survivors-Handbook-Where-Harold-A-A-Skaarup/9780595212392-item.html?ikwid=harold+skaarup&ikwsec=Books

E-book: http://www.kobobooks.com/ebook/Nebraska-Warbird-Survivors-2002/book-iHhcL249NkCL-xdcq80jmg/page1.html?utm_source=indigo&utm_medium=web&utm_campaign=retailer&ikwid=harold+skaarup&ikwsec=Books


Nook book: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/nebraska-warbird-survivors-2002-harold-a-skaarup/1005161659?ean=9781462047956&itm=57&USRI=Harold+Skaarup

Nebraska Warplane Survivors


(Otto Dickey Photo)

(Allen Jones Photos)

North American F-100A Super Sabre (Serial No. 63825), mounted on cement pylons at Aurora Airport.  This aircraft is painted in Thunderbird colours.


(Ted Quackenbush Photo)

Lockheed T-33A Shooting Star (Serial No. 51-8880), C/N 580-6664.  This aircraft is mounted on a pedestal at Beatrice Municipal Airport, where it has been on display since April 1963.


North American F-86D Sabre (Serial No. 52-3735).


(USAF Photo)

Republic F-84F Thunderstreak (Serial No. 52-6642).

David City Municipal Airport

(Allen Jones Photos)

Republic RF-84F Thunderstreak (Serial No. 53-7560), mounted on a pylon.

Fairbury, Engels Airport

Lockheed T-33A Shooting Star (Serial No. 51-09111).

North American F-100A Super Sabre (Serial No.).

Grand Island

Bell UH-1 Iroquois helicpter (Serial No.).

Bell AH-1F Cobra Helicopter (Serial No. 68-15108), National Guard Flight Facility.

(Allen Jones Photo)

Lockheed T-33A Shooting Star (Serial No. 53-5882), TR-882.  This aircraft is mounted on a concrete pedestal in the Veteran's Park.



Lockheed T-33A Shooting Star (Serial No. 52-9205), mounted on pylons.


Bell AH-1 Cobra helicopter (Serial No. 70-15967), American Legion Post 34.


(BruceS Photo)

McDonnell Douglas F-4D Phantom II (Serial No. 65-0735), C/N 1794.  This aircraft is mounted on a pedestal at Hastings Municipal Airport.

Kearney, Museum of Nebraska Aviation, Lil Red Aero Inc., Route 1, Box 120, 68847.

Lexington, Heartland Museum of Military Vehicles

Bell UH-1M Iroquois Helicopter (Serial No. 66-0513).

Bell UH-1M Iroquois Helicopter (Serial No. 66-01168).

Bell UH-1M Iroquois Helicopter (Serial No. 68-16329).

Lincoln Air National Guard Base, 115th ARG, 2420 W. Butler Ave., Lincoln, 68524-1897.

Lincoln ANG Base has the second oldest ANG unit in the nation.  It was opened in 1943 with the 401st Fighter Squadron at Westover Field, from Massachusetts.  In 1948, the NE ANG held its first summer field training at Dow AFB, Bangor, Maine.  They completed their service at Alexandria AFB, Louisiana.  In 1954 the squadron was redesignated the 173rd Fighter Interceptor Squadron (FIS), Air Defense Command.  In 1956, the 173rd FIS moved to the present facilities as a SAC base.  In 1964, the mission changed from air defense to tactical photo-reconnaissance.  In 1994, it was redesignated the 155th Air Refueling Group, flying KC-135Rs.  Aircraft on display at the base and Municipal Airport  include

Lockheed T-33A Shooting Star (Serial No. 52-9264), C/N 580-7330.  This aircraft is mounted on a pedestal at 173 ARS NE ANG, Lincoln Airport.

McDonnell Douglas RF-4C Phantom II (Serial No. 64-0998), C/N 661.

North American F-86L Sabre Dog (Serial No. 52-3760), C/N 190-163.  This aircraft is mounted on a pedestal at 173 ARS NE ANG, Lincoln Airport.

Republic RF-84F Thunderflash (Serial No. 51-11259).  This aircraft is mounted on a pedestal at 173 ARS NE ANG, Lincoln Airport.

Lincoln, Airport

(Hanyou23 Photo)

Arrow Sport; as seen hanging in the Lincoln Airport passenger terminal (south section), 2400 W. Adams Street.  Photo taken from the second floor gates 3 & 4 walkway in the terminal.

McCook Airbase Historical Society, PO Box B-29, McCook, 69001-0029.

McCook Airport.

North American F-86H-10-NA Sabre (Serial No. 53-1503).

Minden, The Harold Warp Pioneer Village, Highways 6, 34 & 10, PO Box 068, Minden, 68959-0068.

(City of Vancouver Archives Photo, AM640-S1-: CVA 260-1513)

Bell P-59B Airacomet (Serial No. 44-22639), coded 619, visiting Vancouver, British Columbia, Aug 1945.

Bell P-59B Airacomet (Serial No. 44-22656), built in 1942, has two GE I-16 engines

Bensen B-6 (No Serial No.), built in 1954

Bensen B-7 (No Serial No.), built in 1955, McCullough military surplus engine

Cessna Model A monoplane (Serial No. NC-8141), built in 1929

Curtiss Bi-plane (No Serial No.), built in 1910

Curtiss JN-4D Jenny (Serial No. 1350), built in 1917, OX-5 engine

Ercoupe Model No. 415-C (Serial No. 67), built in 1941

Hartman Monoplane, home-built in 1910, Anzani engine

Heath Parasol Spencer V, built in 1931

Piper Apache Model S25-32 (Serial No. N1030P), 1954, two 150-hp Lycoming engines

Pitcairn PA-24 Autogyro (Serial No. NC11638/F-55), 1931, Kinner R-5 engine

Sikorsky YR-4B Hoverfly Helicopter (Serial No. 26), Navy No. HNS-1, Army (Serial No. 43-28229), N75378, Sikorsky (Serial No.26), 1942,  200-hp Warner engine

Stinson Detroiter Model SM8A (Serial No. 4080), 1930, Lycoming radial engine

Swallow (Serial No. possibly 919), built in 1927-28

Taylor J-2 Cub (Serial No. 1650), 1937, Continental engine

Weed Hopper Ultralite Gypsy (Serial No. G133), 1982

Wright Kitty Hawk (No Serial No.), 1962 replica


(Bryan Darnell Photos)

Republic RF-84F Thunderstreak (Serial No. 51-1929)

Omaha, Offutt Air Force Base, 55 WG.

Offutt AFB began as Fort Crook, named for General George Crook in 1896.  It later became Fort Omaha, and many of its original buildings are still in use.  During the First World War, the first air unit assigned to the post was the 61st Balloon Company.  The first flying field was established here in 1920.  In 1924 Offutt Field was named after Omaha’s first air casualty during the First World War, Lt. Jarvis J. Offutt.  Following the First World War, the base was used mostly for training air reservists.  In the 1930s, Glenn L. Martin established an aircraft manufacturing plant, the Nebraska Bomber Assembly Plant, which was constructed at Offutt Field.  During the Second World War, an Italian POW camp was established.  After the Second World War, the field reverted to being a training facility for Army Reservists.  In 1948, Offutt Field and Fort Crook were designated Offutt AFB, which became the host base for HQ, Strategic Air Command (SAC) from Andrews AFB, Maryland).  From 1959 to 1965, the 566th Strategic Missile Squadron (SMS) was based here, later becoming the 549th SMS, responsible for operations of 3 Atlas D missile launcher sites.  In 1992, SAC was disestablished and replaced by US Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM).  Aircraft operating from Offutt AFB include E-4B; RC-135S/U/V/W; EC-135C; TC-135S/W; KC-135E; WC-135W; and OC-135B. (The base runway is 11,700’ long).  Static aircraft displayed at Offutt AFB include the following:

Boeing B-17F Flying Fortress (Serial No. 42-3374), painted as (Serial No. 42-30230), LH, C/N 8310, “Homesick Angel”.

(Marine Biologist Photo)

Boeing B-52G Stratofortress (Serial No. 57-6468), C/N 464173.  This aircraft is mounted on pylons at the main gate to the base.

(USAF Photo)

Boeing EC-135A Looking Glass (Serial No. 61-0582), 1994.

Boeing EC-135A Looking Glass (Serial No. 61-0287), C/N 18194.  This aircraft is preserved at the main gate to the base.

Ashland, Strategic Air and Space Museum (SA&SM), 28210 West Park Highway, Ashland 68003.  The file has become too large and in order to keep the page from crashing, the aircraft preserved at the Strategic Air and Museum are listed on a separate web page on this website.

The Strategic Air and Space Museum is a museum focusing on aircraft and nuclear missiles of the United States Air Force.  It is located near Ashland, Nebraska, along Interstate 80 southwest of Omaha.  The objective of the museum is to preserve and display historic aircraft, missile, and space vehicles and provide educational resources.  It is regarded as having one of the top collections of strategic aircraft.

Omaha, Museum

Republic F-84F Thunderstreak (Serial No. 52-06385).

Omaha, Freedom Park, United States Naval Museum

(Team 57 Photo)

Douglas A-4D Skyhawk (BuNo. 149618), AE, 901, USS Enterprise.  This aircraft is mounted on an iron pedestal in the park.

(Team 57 Photo)

LTV A-7D Corsair II (Serial No. 69-6191).

(Team 57 Photo)

Sikorsky SH-3D Sea King Helicopter, USCG (Serial No. 1370).


North American P-51D-30NA Mustang (Serial No. 44-74466), ex-RCAF (Serial No. 9227), "Barbara Jean", Nebraska Air National Guard colours, Reg. No. N10607.  Harry Barr.

Seward, Airport

Bell UH-1 Iroquois Helicopter (Serial No. 16473), NE NG.

South Sioux City, Martin Flying Service, W. Hwy 20, 68776.

LTV A-7D Corsair II (Serial No.), static display in a city park.


Northrup T-38 Talon (Serial No. 60-00567)


Republic F-84F Thunderstreak (Serial No. 52-07251)


(Influence Waterfowl Calls Photo)

Bell AH-1 Cobra helicopter (Serial No. 67-15772), American Legion Post 81.


Republic F-84F Thunderstreak (Serial No. 51-1935).  This aircraft is mounted on a pedestal at York Municipal Airport.

[1] William R. Evinger, Editor, Directory of US Military Bases Worldwide, Third Edition, Oryx Press, 1998, p. 135.

[2] Internet: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strategic_Air_and_Space_Museum.

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