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North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

54. U.S. Military Vintage and current inventory aircraft perform a fly by during the heritage flight portion of the air show at Naval Air Station Oceana, Va., Sept. 9, 2007. From left to right-front to back, the F-86 Saberjet aircraft, the P-51 Mustang aircraft; the F-22 Raptor aircraft; and the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter aircraft. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Joshua Nuzzo/Released)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

U.S. Navy Capt. Dale Snodgerass waves as he taxies his P-51 Mustang aircraft past the crowd of Naval Air Station Oceana Air Show in Virginia Beach, Va., Sept. 7, 2007. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Matthew D. Leistikow)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

A P-51 Mustang aircraft stops on the flight line of Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D., during the Bomber Heritage Day open house June 24, 2007. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Michael B. Keller)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

A U.S. Air Force F-16 aircraft from Hill Air Force Base, Utah, and a P-51 Mustang aircraft fly in formation over Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., March 2, 2007, during the annual Heritage Flight Conference. The conference provides a forum for civilian and Air Combat Command demonstration pilots to train together in preparation for the spring and summer air show season. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airmen Jacqueline Hawkins)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

The U.S. Air Force Heritage Flight makes an appearance at the 2008 Joint Services Open House at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., May 17, 2008. The flight consisted of, from top-to-bottom, a P-51 Mustang aircraft; an F-4 Phantom fighter aircraft; an F-15E Strike Eagle fighter aircraft; and an F-22 Raptor aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Kathrine McDowell/Released)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

(Clockwise), A P-51 Mustang fighter aircraft, an F-15 Strike Eagle fighter aircraft, an F-4 Phantom fighter aircraft, and an F-22 Raptor aircraft fly together during a heritage flight during the 2008 Joint Service Open House at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., May 17, 2008. The event commemorated the 60th Anniversary of the Berlin Airlift and it also featured various military and civilian aircraft conducting aerial and static display demonstrations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Steven R. Doty/Released)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

A P-51 Mustang fighter aircraft makes a high speed pass during the 2008 Joint Service Open House at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., May 17, 2008. The event commemorated the 60th Anniversary of the Berlin Airlift and it also featured various military and civilian aircraft conducting aerial and static display demonstrations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Steven R. Doty/Released)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

(Clockwise), A P-51 Mustang fighter aircraft, an F-15 Strike Eagle fighter aircraft, an F-4 Phantom fighter aircraft, and an F-22 Raptor aircraft fly together during a heritage flight during the 2008 Joint Service Open House at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., May 16, 2008. The event commemorated the 60th Anniversary of the Berlin Airlift and it also featured various military and civilian aircraft conducting aerial and static display demonstrations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Suzanne M. Day/Released)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

A P-51 Mustang fighter aircraft pilot waves during AirFest 2008 at March Air Reserve Base, Calif., May 3, 2008. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Matthew Smith)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

A F-22 Raptor, P-51 Mustang, P-40 Warhawk fly in formation during "Heritage Flight" of Air Fest 2008 at March Air Reserve Base, Calif., May 3, 2008. Air Fest features both military and civilian aerial and ground demonstrations during the two day air show, May 3-4, 2008. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Matthew Smith/Released)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

A U.S. Army Air Forces P-51 Mustang aircraft, left, and a U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor aircraft fly side-by-side at Air Expo 2008, Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., April 25, 2008, to represent the past and present of 60 years of Air Force heritage and tradition. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Eric Harris)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

A U.S. Army Air Forces P-51 Mustang aircraft, top, and a U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor aircraft fly together to represent the past and present of 60 years of Air Force heritage and tradition at Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., April 25, 2008, during Air Expo 2008. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Eric Harris)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

An F-22 Raptor, A-10 Warthog, F-4 Phantom and P-51 Mustang aircrafts perform the Heritage Flight during the Aviation Nation air show on Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., Nov. 11, 2007. Aviation Nation, which is the Air Force's premiere air show, is the capstone event of the Air Force's yearlong 60th anniversary celebration. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Taylor Worley)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

A P-51 Mustang, F-4 Phantom, A-10 Warthog and F-22 Raptor aircrafts perform the Heritage Flight during the Aviation Nation air show on Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., Nov. 11, 2007. Aviation Nation, which is the Air Force's premiere air show, is the capstone event of the Air Force's yearlong 60th anniversary celebration. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Taylor Worley)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

A P-51 Mustang aircraft and an F-15 Strike Eagle aircraft fly in formation to honor and show the heritage of the Air Force combat flight lineage during the Pope Air Force Base Air Show Oct. 6, 2007. (U.S. Air Force photo by Michael Murchison)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

Guests watch as a U.S. Navy P-51 Mustang aircraft and a Navy Corsair prepare to takeoff during the second-annual Halos and Heroes event at the Virginia Beach Airport in Virginia Oct. 6, 2007. The all-day event, sponsored by Air Compassion for Veterans, honored wounded Soldiers, their families and those who volunteer to help transport them to medical facilities. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman John Suits)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

1940s -- The P-51 Mustang provided high-altitude escort to B-17s and B-24s. They scored heavily over German interceptors and by war's end, P-51s had destroyed 4,950 enemy aircraft in the air, more than any other fighter.

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

DAYTON, Ohio -- North American P-51D Mustang at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

DAYTON, Ohio -- North American P-51D Mustang at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

DAYTON, Ohio -- North American P-51D Mustang in the Air Power Gallery at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Airshow Traveler)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

DAYTON, Ohio -- North American P-51D cockpit at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

Jimmy Leeward pilots a vintage P-51 Mustang plane over Mansfield Lahm Airport in Mansfield, Ohio, June 8, 2008. The P-51 was specially painted to resemble aircraft of 164th Fighter Squadron which began its service at Mansfield in 1948 to mark the 60th anniversary of the Ohio Air National Guard at Mansfield Lahm Airport.(U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Robert J. Koehler/Released)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

Jimmy Leeward taxis a vintage P-51 Mustang aircraft on the Mansfield Lahm Airport runway in Mansfield, Ohio, June 8, 2008. The P-51 was specially painted to resemble aircraft of 164th Fighter Squadron which began its service at Mansfield in 1948 to mark the 60th anniversary of the Ohio Air National Guard at Mansfield Lahm Airport.(U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Robert J. Koehler/Released)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

Jimmy Leeward pilots a vintage P-51 Mustang plane over Mansfield Lahm Airport in Mansfield, Ohio, June 8, 2008. The P-51 was specially painted to resemble aircraft of 164th Fighter Squadron which began its service at Mansfield in 1948 to mark the 60th anniversary of the Ohio Air National Guard at Mansfield Lahm Airport.(U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Robert J. Koehler/Released)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

Pilot Jimmy Leeward taxis a vintage P-51 Mustang plane on Mansfield Lahm Airport in Mansfield, Ohio, June 8, 2008. The P-51 was specially painted to resemble those of 164th Fighter Squadron that began service at Mansfield in 1948, marking the 60th anniversary of the Ohio Air National Guard at Mansfield Lahm Airport. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Robert J. Koehler/Released)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

Jimmy Leeward pilots a vintage P-51 Mustang plane over Mansfield Lahm Airport in Mansfield, Ohio, June 8, 2008. The P-51 was specially painted to resemble those of 164th Fighter Squadron that began service at Mansfield in 1948, marking the 60th anniversary of the Ohio Air National Guard at Mansfield Lahm Airport. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Robert J. Koehler/Released)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51H 3/4 front view (S/N 44-64164; fifth production -H model). (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51H in flight (S/N 44-64164). (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

North American XP-51J (S/N 44-76027). First of two -J models built. (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang side

North American P-51 Mustang side

1940's -- The P-51 Mustang destroyed more enemy aircraft than any other fighter in Europe. It began as the NA-73 in 1940 at Britain's request. The design showed promise and the Army Air Forces purchase of Allison-powered Mustangs began in 1941 primarily for photo reconnaissance and ground support use due to its limited high-altitude performance.

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

1940s -- The P-51 Mustang destroyed more enemy aircraft than any other fighter in Europe. It began as the NA-73 in 1940 at Britain's request. In December 1943, Merlin-powered P-51Bs first entered combat over Europe. Providing high-altitude escort to B-17s and B-24s, they scored heavily over German interceptors and by war's end, P-51s had destroyed 4,950 enemy aircraft in the air, more than any other fighter.

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

1940s -- The P-51 Mustang began as the NA-73 in 1940 at Britain's request. The design showed promise and the Army Air Forces purchase of Allison-powered Mustangs began in 1941 primarily for photo reconnaissance and ground support use due to its limited high-altitude performance.

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51D (S/N 44-63528) with two XRJ-30-MA ramjets in May 1948 at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51D with pulsejets. (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51D-25 (S/N 44-73157). (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51D "My Girl" taking off from Iwo Jima. (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

Formation of eight North American P-51D aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

North American XP-51F 3/4 front view (S/N 43-43332). (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

North American XP-51F 3/4 front view with 5-blade propeller. (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51 Mustang

North American P-51B prepare for take-off, 361st FG, 376th FS; includes S/N 42-106707 "Sleepy Time Gal" and S/N 42-106945 marked E9V. (U.S. Air Force photo)

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