WWII Veteran to Realize Dream of Flying in P-51 Mustang after 70 Years

Paul Crawford in his P-51 'Little Rebel' ( photo by Paul Crawford Collection)
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Paul Crawford in his P-51 'Little Rebel' ( photo by Paul Crawford Collection)
Paul Crawford in his P-51 ‘Little Rebel’ ( photo by Paul Crawford Collection)

PRESS RELEASE – World War II pilot Paul Crawford dreamed of flying in a P-51 Mustang like the one he commanded 70 years ago in China, where he flew 29 missions until he was shot down in 1945. Now 91, Buckhead resident Crawford is about to see his dream come true when the Commemorative Air Force Dixie Wing in Peachtree City, Ga., takes him up  in their restored P-51 on Dec. 15. Crawford will visit the Dixie Wing headquarters at Falcon Field Atlanta Regional Airport in Peachtree City a few hours after dawn to talk with the Wing members and clamber into the restored warbird that the Wing operates. His flight is scheduled for 10 a.m. with Dixie Wing Leader Jim Buckley at the controls. Crawford and the Dixie Wing staff will be available for questions and discussion before the flight. The Dixie Wing hangar and headquarters are located at 1200 Echo Court, Peachtree City, GA, 30269. Plenty of parking is available.“When the Dixie Wing read about Crawford’s desire to fly in a P-51 from a story about his appearance as a speaker at an Atlanta event, we realized we could reward this WWII hero with a flight in our aircraft, “Red Nose,” said Buckley. “The P-51 in which he was shot down was brand new, and ours is 70 years old – but still the same!”

When: Tuesday Dec. 15, 2015 (to be rescheduled the following day in case of rain)
Where: Commemorative Air Force Dixie Wing – Dixie Wing, CAF, 1200 Echo Ct., Peachtree City, GA 30269
Time: 10:00 a.m.

Red Nose flying with a lucky passenger ( Photo by John Willhoff)
Red Nose flying a lucky passenger ( Photo by John Willhoff)

About the Commemorative Air Force Dixie Wing

The Dixie Wing, based in Peachtree City, Ga., was approved as the 83rd CAF unit on Feb.28, 1987, and has since displayed its collection of vintage World War II aircraft in numerous air shows throughout the United States. The wing is a non-profit, tax-exempt “flying museum” that relies on contributions of time and funds to carry out its mission.

About the Commemorative Air Force 

The Commemorative Air Force (CAF) is a non-profit organization dedicated to flying and restoring World War II aircraft.  Based in Dallas, Texas, the organization has more than 12,500 members and operates a fleet of more than 160 World War II aircraft.  The CAF was founded to acquire, restore and preserve in flying condition a complete collection of combat aircraft that were flown by all military services of the United States, and selected aircraft of other nations, for the education and enjoyment of present and future generations of Americans. More than just a collection of airworthy warplanes from the past, the CAF’s fleet of historic aircraft, known as the CAF Ghost Squadron, recreates, reminds and reinforces the lessons learned from the defining moments in American military aviation history.



  1. I hope the P-51 Red Nose has dual controls and if Paul would like, I hope he is allowed to take the controls for a bit.

  2. Great guy, Great story,Great aeroplane
    (Im a UK Mustang fan who’s written a story about Mustang pilots)

    Keep up the great work!

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