Fifth Annual TBM Gathering Set for May 14-15, 2021

TBM Formation Flight (photo by Greg Morehead)
Aircorps Art Dec 2019

After the pandemic forced the cancellation of their 2020 event, the fifth TBM Reunion and Salute to Veterans is now set to occur in Peru, Illinois on May 14/15 according to the air show’s founder, Brad Deckert. The event, normally an annual affair, is dedicated to WWII veterans and the famed Grumman Avenger naval torpedo bomber.

An aerial view of some of the TBMs which took part in the first TBM Gathering at Peru, Illinois back in 2016. The annual event has moved to Terra Haute, Indiana this summer due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (photo by Greg Morehead)

Brad Deckert, owner of TBM-3E Bu.85632, initiated the gathering back in April, 2016 as an effort to bring TBM owner/operators together for training and to discuss mutual concerns. It wasn’t an air show, per se, but proved to be so popular that the local community in Peru, Illinois embraced the idea and has helped to fund and promote the gathering ever since. The show involves much more than Avengers now, of course, although the type is still a major component.

A glorious sunset formation shot of three TBMs. TBM-3E Bu.85650 is in the foreground with TBM-3E Bu. 85882 ‘Ida Red’ in the middle and Brad Deckert’s TBM-3E Bu.85828 in the background. (photo by Greg Morehead)

Regarding this year’s event, Deckert stated: “We are excited to be back with the gathering and honor our Veterans. The event has grown tremendously in just a few years, and it has become a tradition for our small community.”

Turkeys on the prowl, some of the TBMs which attended the first TBM gathering in Peru, Illinois back in April, 2016. The event is now scheduled to take place in Terra Haute, Indiana in late July this year. (photo by Greg Morehead)

As in previous years, a TBM forum for owner/operators will take place. This year’s forum will include a presentation on maintaining the Avenger’s Curtiss-Wright R-2600-20 engine, as well as an open session for TBM owner/operators to discuss mutual concerns. For obvious reasons, these sessions will not be open to the public, however, everyone is welcome to attend all other weekend activities. The public will have the opportunity to get a close-up look at the Avengers, and witness some flying as well. Formation flights are in the works too of course. The organizers hope to invite former Avenger veterans as well, although the final details are incomplete at present. Furthermore, the local EAA Chapter will be offering lunches, which attendees may purchase.

We look forwards to covering this air show for our readers! For more information visit

TBM-3E Bu85882, Ida Red, comes in for her closeup back in 2016. (photo by Greg Morehead)


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