The staff at Paul Allen's Flying Heritage Collection is gearing up for their first-ever air show. The stories behind some of those military aircraft are reason enough to check it out.
95-year-old Colonel Ralph Jenkins flew a P-47 Thunderbolt in 129 missions during World War II.
That airplane has a great reputation of bringing the pilot home, said Jenkins. It's a very rugged airplane. I last flew it in 1945, so it's been a long time.
When it came time to name his plane back then, he says it was an easy choice.
Tallahassee Lassie, he said. Tallahassee Lassie.
The name is in honor of his wife, a Tallahassee born woman by the name Tiero Jenkins. The two met while he was stationed in Tallahassee and she was going to school at Florida State.
Jenkins not only named his plane after his new bride, he had his squadron painter put his wife's picture on it as well.
The love affair with that Thunderbolt has never diminished, that was a lifetime affair. This one too, he said, holding his wife's hand.
KING 5 met the pair at Paul Allen's Flying Heritage Collection in Everett, where an exact replica of Jenkins' plane is now on display. It's one of many planes that will be featured in the Collection's very first air and ground show.
Flying Heritage Collection's Skyfair is set for July 26th.
Part of why we do this is to share these planes with the public and honor our veterans, said Adrian Hunt, the executive director of Flying Heritage Collection.
Jenkins says he's proud to have his plane on display - and so is his wife.
We danced through the skies of Europe, he said. We literally danced. It brings back some very, very intense memories.
The First Annual FHC Skyfair will include live music, food, and activities for the kids, in addition to planes on display, on the ground and in the air. Gates open at ten a.m.
To learn more about it, click here.