Hudson – The last fully restored flying fighter that survived the attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941 has arrived at the American Heritage Museum and will be on display for the public to view.
This Curtiss P-40B Warhawk was stationed that day at Wheeler Field in Oahu, Hawaii, but amazingly suffered no damage during the Japanese attack. On Jan. 24, 1942, in another ironic twist of fate, with only nine months of service and 56 hours of flight time, the plane spun out of control during a routine training flight. The pilot, Lt. Kenneth Wayne Sprankle, was unable to recover from the spin, crashing into the side of a mountain. The crash occurred in an inaccessible area of the island.
In 1985, the Warhawk’s remains were “rediscovered.” After some preliminary investigation, it was determined the air frame was not severely damaged and if it could be removed was restorable. Some parts were recovered during 1985. A second recovery mission in 1989 salvaged the rest of the air frame. A long restoration ensued through several organizations eventually moving to the Collings Foundation where it was meticulously restored back to its original flying configuration.
For more information on the P-40 Warhawk visit
For more information on the American Heritage Museum visit
The museum is located at 568 Main St., Hudson.