Published on August 15th, 2021 | by Mark Dwyer


Squawk 7000 – “Night-Fright” a C-47 Restoration

In conversation with Charlie Walker – getting under the skin of a War Bird.

June 1944 and the War in Europe had reached a critical phase – the only way to stop Hitler and the Third Reich was to launch an invasion of Europe on what would become known as the D-Day Landings. Part of that invasion plan involved Paratroopers – jumping from aircraft to help secure the way ahead for the landing craft heading for the beaches of France. This wouldn’t have been possible without, according to American President Dwight D Eisenhower:

“Four pieces of equipment that most senior officers came to regard as among the most vital to our success in Africa and Europe were the bulldozer, the jeep, the 2–ton truck, and the C-47 aeroplane. Curiously, none of these was designed for combat. One of these aircraft, a C-47 Skytrain formerly of the 79th Troop Carrier Squadron, 436th Troop Carrier Group, flew with the USAAF from Membury airfield (Station 466) during WW2, one of 800 that flew on June 6th 1944. 

The aircraft christened “Night Fright” took part in all the Airborne missions in Europe during the war, dropping paratroopers, towing gliders, evacuating wounded and flying tons of much-needed supplies to the front line.

Having survived the war and several civilian roles – the aircraft is being restored in Coventry in the UK, and one of the people behind that restoration is Charlie Walker – our guest this week on Squawk 7000


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About the Author

Mark is an airline pilot flying the Boeing 737 for a major European airline. In addition he is also a Type Rating Instructor, Type Rating Examiner and Base Training Captain on the B737. Outside of commercial flying Mark enjoys flying light aircraft from the smallest 3 Axis microlights up to heavier singles. He is also an instructor and EASA Examiner on single engines and a UK CAA Examiner. He flies the Chipmunk for the Irish Historic Flight Foundation (IHFF). Mark became the Chairman of the National Microlight Association of Ireland (NMAI) in 2013 and has overseen a massive growth in the organisation. In this role he has worked at local and national levels. In 2015, Mark won ‘Upcoming Aviation Professional Award’ at the Aviation Industry Awards sponsored by the IAA. Mark launched this website back in 2002 while always managing the website, he has also been Editor and Deputy Editor of FlyingInIreland Magazine from 2005 to 2015.

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