The First Choppers
Excellent July/August issue! Barrett Tillman continues to spin history with skills better than fiction writers. (Ed. note: He writes fiction too.) The year 1942 seems to be a banner year in aviation history and yet one important element was not mentioned. This was the year of the first operational helicopters.
The Army Air Corps began with their operational experiments in 1942, followed by the Navy (Coast Guard) a year later. I am unaware of any official recognition by the Air Force/Army of their 75th year of this now-essential air machine. Next year will be the 75th anniversary of the purchase by the Navy of their first helicopter.
I’m sure Sergei Sikorsky has regaled you over coffee with his personal accounts (some of which you have also published) of the Coast Guard’s early attempts to make this now-critical-to-aviation aircraft work.
Perhaps we should do a 75th helo anniversary issue!—BD