Warbird Alley
Stearman Books

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From Stearmans to Starfighters: A Pilot's Memoir
By William H. Pickron, Jr. and Patricia D. West

Lt. Col. Bill Pickron dreamed of flying from the time he was five years old, and fly he did - right into the Tennessee Aviation Hall of Fame. Bill soloed in a Stearman and soared in a Starfighter, eventually piloting over 60 aircraft. His journey began as the Army Air Corps' youngest staff sergeant pilot, took him to Iceland and the Pacific Theater in World War II, led him to command the 525th squadron in Germany, and landed him in Rome teaching the Italian Air Force how to fly F-104 Starfighters. At one time, many considered him to be the best instrument pilot in the Air Force and the best commander they ever had. After twenty-six years in the military, Bill kept flying, this time for four Tennessee governors. Throughout it all, he had the time of his life, and his stories are full of fun, adventure, and occasionally some skullduggery. Bill lived his dream and always encouraged others to live theirs - and to laugh along the way.



Biplane Odyssey: Flying the Stearman to Every US State and Canadian Province in North America
By Alan Lopez

A detailed pilot narrative account of an amazing journey in a WWII primary trainer.



Cannibal Queen: An Aerial Odyssey Across America
By Steven Coonts

The author of Flight of the Intruder recounts his three-month, forty-eight-state flight into the heart of America in a 1942 Stearman biplane, describing the panorama of forests, mountains, rivers, and valleys beneath him.

From a Reader Review: "If you love to fly, this book will remind you why. If you don't but read it anyway, you may find that you do and hadn't known it. It played the same role in my becoming a pilot that Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance did in my learning to ride a motorcycle, and my life is incomparably richer for both."

Flying Through Time: A Journey into History in a WWII Biplane
By Jim Doyle

Tens of thousands of America’s pilots during World War II trained in the Boeing Stearman biplane. For most, it was their first airplane in a series of larger, faster, and more dangerous aircraft that they used to fight the war. The pilots would never forget their first flights in a Stearman and the adventures that followed. Jim Doyle, owner of a restored 1941 Stearman, retraced the wartime journeys of his plane, crossing the country twice; flying over California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Arkansas; and touching down at each of the eight bases at which it served. Flying Through Time is the story of Doyle’s challenging flight and of the uncertainties of piloting a sixty-year-old biplane almost 8,000 miles. His experiences meeting, talking, and flying with the men who flew the legendary Stearman paint a vivid picture of the intense, emotion-filled days of World War II. The pilots’ recollections, refreshed for many when they took the controls of Doyle’s plane, are woven throughout the narrative of his trip. These anecdotes, and new information from an archive discovered during the flight, tell of fears, courage, humor, and the sheer adventure of the events that owned the veterans’ youth. This is seat-of-the-pants flying at its most thrilling, recalling a time when ordinary young Americans were called upon to be heroes.



Bull Stearman: The Story of the Stearman M-2 Speedmail
By Alan Lopez

The definitive history of a rare and legendary aircraft. Includes a brief history of Stearman Aircraft Co. and a first person account of the last flight and crash in the Yukon in 1939.


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