Commemorative Air Force Aichi D3A Type 99
D3A Type 99
First Albuquerque Visit: 1984
The Aichi D3A Type 99 Carrier Bomber, nicknamed “Val”, is a World War II carrier-based dive bomber. It was the primary dive bomber of the Imperial Japanese Navy and was involved in almost all Japanese Navy actions, including the attack on Pearl Harbor. The aircraft sank more Allied warships than any other Axis aircraft.
The Vultee BT-13 Valiant is an American World War II basic trainer aircraft built by Vultee Aircraft for the US Army Air Corps, and later the US Army Air Forces.
On September 6, 1961, the Confederate Air Force (CAF) was chartered as a nonprofit Texas corporation with the mission to acquire, restore, and preserve in flying condition a complete collection of combat aircraft flown by all military services of the United States. By the end of the first year, there were already nine aircraft in the CAF fleet.
Beginning in 2002, the Confederate Air Force changed their name to the Commemorative Air Force in order to better reflect the actual mission of the organization. Today the CAF, headquartered at the Dallas Executive Airport in Dallas, Texas, has a fleet of more than 175 aircraft representing more than 60 different types along with planes from foreign countries and military conflicts since World War II.
As the Confederate Air Force, the organization bought two former BT-13 “Valiant” trainers, N56867and NC56478, in 1968 that were then converted into Val replicas for use in the filming of the movie Tora! Tora! Tora!, The Commemorative Air Force’s Gulf Coast Wing’s Tora! Tora! Tora! team still flies the movie’s aircraft simulating the attack at airshows.
An Aichi D3AType 99 “Val” built by Mitsubishi, was flown at the CAF Albuquerque air show in June of 1984. This was the last event that took place in the old World War II hanger occupied by Cutter Aviation before it was torn down to clear the ramp for the Albuquerque Sunport Terminal expansion that began in October of 1986.
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