Boeing’s C-97 Stratofreighter airlifter was first flown on November 9th 1944. A development of the B-29 Superfortress, the C-97 essentially shared the bomber’s wings, tail, and engines- at least at first. But after the tenth airframe was completed Boeing switched to the taller vertical tail assembly from the B-50.
Over the subsequent 31 years of service, C-97s would be converted for use as aerial tankers, medical evacuation transports, electronic warfare aircraft, and air-sea rescue platforms. This video, uploaded by YouTuber airshowfansh, shows a C-97 in action- a rare sight indeed.
Owned and operated by the Berlin Airlift Historical Foundation (BAHF), the C-97G airlifter recently flew for the first time in 15 years. Lovingly restored at the Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn, New York, the C-97G flew again on November 7th 2017. Originally delivered the United States Air Force (USAF) in 1954, the BAHF’s C-97G started life as a KC-97G aerial refueling tanker.
After serving for 20 years the aircraft was retired to the boneyard at AMARG in 1974. After that the aircraft’s odyssey included seizure by US Marshals, humanitarian flights to South Africa, and carrying cargoes of fish up in Alaska. Today the beautifully restored aircraft wears the colors of the only C-97 to participate in the Berlin Airlift- YC-97A 45–9595.