Veterans Air Express Chief Pilot Robert Chambers…

his photo and role.

Chief Pilot Robert Chambers in 1945 with the government surplus DC-3 just acquired by Veterans Air Express.

DC-3 Chief Pilot Robert Chambers stands under the “turned-up nose” of Veterans Air Express first aircraft.

Look at this.

THE BEFORE:  Our Chief Pilot Robert Chambers already hired on by Veterans Air Express – before our first DC-3 was even in livery.

I am excited to share this photo with you.  Robert’s son Bruce sent it to me today after our second phone conversation in four days.

Pilot Robert Montanarella waves from the Veterans Air Express DC-3 GAYE LYN.

Pilot Robert Montanarella in Veterans Air Express DC-3 GAYE LYN.

THE AFTER:  The same DC-3, “de-militarized” and sporting Veterans‘ livery – with my name GAYE LYN.  That’s Robert Montanarella waving from the left seat. He was Veterans’ first crew hire.

The two Roberts together.  Hooah!

1946 Veterans Air Express Group Photo

Montanarella and Chambers at cargo door. Standing (L-R) are five others I’ve identified: Stevenson, Greenleaf, Gravely, Stettner, and Noll. Six more to go!!! Photo Credit: Air Trails Pictorial, April 1946.

Bruce Chambers confirmed I correctly identified his Dad, Robert, in this group photo.  An article in the  Newark Evening News made me suspect it was Chambers standing at the open cargo door with another crewman named Robert — Robert Montanarella — because the two piloted the DC-3 together.

We’re closing in on this group.  Who do you know???


 

4 Comments
  1. My father, Robert Chambers, flew in the 9th Air Force, 410th Bomb Group. He was 22/23 years old, but he is not Robbie Chambers. Dad flew A-20 attack bombers over Germany. He flew in late 1944 through end of war in Europe in 1945.
    The name Chambers is a good English name so I am not surprised there was another one. In fact Dad’s paternal grandparents came from Stornoway,Scotland.

    Bruce Chambers

    • Morning, Bruce. Thanks so much for your reply.

      There you have it, David, straight from the family. Bruce has been a huge help to me in pulling the story of Veterans Air together. Thanks to Robert Chambers for keeping and protecting many operational records and to the family for newspaper clippings, we know a lot more about the air line.

      Again, thanks for visiting our website. We welcome you back anytime.
      Gaye Lyn

  2. David, thanks so much for visiting our website. To my knowledge and from my notes, during WWII Robert Chambers served in the U.S. 9th Air Force E.T.O. But let’s ask the family. I’ll bring his son, Bruce, into the conversation. Check back soon. Thanks, again. Regards, Gaye Lyn

  3. My father flew in the RCAF WW2 with a pilot F/O Robbie Chambers who didn’t see active duty till March 1945 when he was 22/23 years old. They flew 10 or 12 missions into Germany in Lancasters. Is it the same guy?

    thanks, david mitchell Toronto

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.