GFPT N3969A / Johnson/Hillcrest /FPL #A21 #E30 #10 / Bu# 53787

Warbird Registry Info.

Early History

United States Navy. 1945 Grumman TBM-3E. Construction #: 3849.
Edgar L. Thorsrud, Missoula, MT, 1963-1972. Registered as N3969A. Forced landing off Airport, Potomac, MT, July 25, 1966.
Johnson Flying Service, Missoula MT. Flew as #A21 N3969A, 1972-1975.

In 2003, Forest Protection Limited requested copies of Aircraft History Cards on seven former U.S. Navy Avenger aircraft currently in the FPL fleet from the National Air and Space Museum of the Smithsonian Institution. Some of the cards were poorly microfilmed, and are presented below as received.

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First USN aircraft history card for BuNo 53787, 1945 to 1948.

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Second USN aircraft history card (new format) for BuNo 53787.

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Third USN aircraft history card (new format) for BuNo 53787, showing that aircraft was stricken from the records in August of 1956.

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RON DUPAS COLLECTION No. 1846. Grumman G-40 TBM-3E Avenger (N3969A c/n 53787) Photographed at Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, by Ron Dupas, 1000aircraftphotos.com.

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N3969A at Missoula, MT, May 1973. [Jay Sherlock, Scalefirebombers]

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Johnson #A21 N3969A, Missoula, MT, date unknown. [The National Archive of Transport Travel and Trade]

Hillcrest Aircraft, Lewiston, ID
#A21 N3969A 1976

1976 – Hillcrest sold #A21 to Forest Protection Limited in 1976.

Forest Protection Limited, Fredericton, NB
#E30 / #10 GFPT 1976-2008

Aerial Spray Program – NB
1976 – FPL purchased #A21 in 1 Mar 1976 for $35,520 from Hillcrest Aircraft, Lewiston, Idaho, then dry leased it from Evergreen Air Services of Montreal. [FPL Annual Report] Flew as #E30. Pilot McKnight. 1977 – Pilot McKnight. 1978 – Repainted and renumbered (#E30 to #10) to fleet standard prior to 1978 spray season. Pilot McKnight. 1979 – Pilot Garon. 1980, 1981 – Pilot McLean. 1982, 1983 – Pilot Gamble. 1984 – Pilot Wilkie. 19851987 – In storage. 1988 – Pilot Ragany. 1989 – Pilot Archer. 1990 – Pilot Fotheringham. 1991 – Pilot Soden. 1992, 1993 – Spare. 1994-1999 – In storage at FPL.

Fire Suppression
2000, 2001, 2002 – Pilot LeBlanc. 2003-2007 – Firebombing. 2008 – Sold to company in Florida.

Post-spray History

2008 – Sold 12 Nov 2008 to Environmental Aviation Services Inc. of Fernandina Beach, Florida. Still flying.

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TBMs #E21 GFPM, #E30 GFPT, #E32 GFPS and #E24 GLEJ in storage at FPL either Fall 1975 or Spring 1976.

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TBMs #10 GFPT and #14 GLEK parked, 1991.

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TBM #10 airborne.

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TBM#10 with new paint job, 2000.

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TBM #10 in hangar at FPL, April 2001.

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TBM #10 at Fredericton Airport.

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TBM #10 and pilot J.J. Lavigne.

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TBM #10 being prepared for run-up, 28 July 2003.

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TBM #10 at FPL, September 2003.

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TBM#10 parked at the FPL hangar at Miramichi Airport, 9 May 2006.

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