A Douglas C-47 that dropped paratroopers over the beaches of Normandy on D-Day made its first flight in more than 20 years in time for the June 6 anniversary and is now on the ramp at Thunder Bay Airport. Buffalo Airways Manager Mikey McBryan bought the deteriorating airframe earlier this year at St.-Hubert Airport with the goal of flying it in time to commemorate the invasion. After taking an anniversary victory lap, McBryan had the Dak flown to Thunder Bay where it will wait for a month before being flown to Airventure 2019 in Oshkosh. More than a dozen DC-3s that flew to Europe earlier this month to re-enact the invasion will also be at AirVenture.
The aircraft, whose restoration was obsessively chronicled by McBryan in his Plane Savers video series on YouTube, was delivered to the Royal Air Force in 1944 and almost immediately made the trip over the English Channel. After the war, Trans-Canada Airlines flew it in passenger service from 1947 to 1957 and Transport Canada flew it until the late 1980s. It weathered on the ramp at St-Hubert until Buffalo bought it late last year.