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Minor A.”Scoop” Smith North American AT-6 Texan


Model ID#:












Pat Tritle

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historical significance

First Albuquerque Visit:    2001

SKU: Model-1160 Categories: ,

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The North American Aviation T-6 Texan is an American single-engine advanced aircraft used to train pilots of the United States Army Air Forces (USAAF), the United States Navy, the Royal Air Force, and Royal Canadian Air Force from World War II into the 1970s.
The United States Army Air Corps (USAAC) and USAAF designated the aircraft as the AT-6, the United States Navy as the SNJ, and the British Commonwealth air forces as the Harvard.

Minor A.”Scoop” Smith (November 30, 1939 – August 24, 2001) was born in Texarkana, AR. He graduated from Western Military Academy and Vanderbilt University. He then served in the United States Army. Earning his pilot’s license in 1957, Scoop went on to fly for Delta Airlines for 31 years. He retired as Captain of an MD-11 in 1997 with over 25,000 flight hours. Scoop and his wife, Julie Smith, flew their WWII T-6s in an acrobatic routine consisting of formation and solo flights, as well as participating in many formation flights across the country. Scoop was devoted to showcasing the old Warbirds in dedication to the men and women of WWII whose courage and valor preserved our nation’s freedom. He was the consummate pilot and thoughtful, compassionate person whose sense of integrity and honor was admired by his friends and family.

Albuquerque resident, Dr. Julia Pfile Smith, one of the United States best women stunt pilots, flew this Pitts Special S-1, N30JP, aircraft at exhibitions and air shows all over New Mexico beginning in 1983. She was a member of the US Women’s acrobatic team that competed in world competition during the summer of 1984. Her team won second place in 1985. Julie and her husband Minor “Scoop” Smith purchased two North American SNJs and performed together for several years.

Scoop Smith and his wife Julie owned two versions of the Texan. One was AT-6 the other was a SNJ-5. Their hanger at Coronado Airport in Albuquerque was favorite hangout for local private pilots. Scoop’s aircraft number N-2686-D was sliver in color while Julie’s SNJ-5 was finished in Navy blue. She flew the Pitts (CoW#712) in two world aerobatic competitions. Minor A.”Scoop” Smith died from injuries suffered in a plane crash in Raton, New Mexico on August 24, 2001 while practicing for an upcoming air show.