John Noll narrates his 1946 film. Details Warsaw overflight permit.

Sole 1946 footage, narrated many years later by the “camera man”

DC-3 in livery of Veterans Air Express on the ramp in 1946
Veterans Air Express DC-3. Image courtesy of John Noll’s film footage.

At least, the first video that I’ve ever found…let alone had the joy of watching…needs little introduction.  Maybe it needs just a little explanation.

You’ve seen my post about John Noll’s story?  In the last paragraph it promises 1946 film footage about Veterans Air Express.  John was a member of the WWII 450th Bomb Group, 723rd Squadron, and he shared this film footage with their Memorial Association website.  His daughter, Buffy, shared it with me and gave me permission to add it to my research site.  His “home movie” converted for YouTube comes to you compliments of Buffy with my deepest appreciation.

Watch and enjoy.

In the first 1:15 (75 seconds), John’s voice-over tells you about the start-up of Veterans Air Express Company and the first aircraft they bought.

DC-4 in fleet of Veterans Air Express in 1946
The 4-engine DC-4 being prepared for Prague flights.

Simultaneously you get to watch him shovel New Jersey snow.  He interrupts himself to marvel at his still-service-fit condition.  (From that aside, you understand he did the “voice over” narration some years after the filming.)

Unexpectedly, we also get to watch the christening of this DC-4.  In another post, I ask you to help identify the Metropolitan Opera singer who does the champagne honors.

Jack’s details of the first UNRRA Warsaw flight in this video add special significance. As part of the Veterans Air Crew, he brought the experience and carried vivid memories of a bombing raid over the area during WWII. You will hear him refer to Ploesti in the voice-over, which is a city in Romania. It is also subject of another Noll Post that you can read here.

Please send the film’s YouTube link [] to everyone you know who may fit these descriptions: Aviation buffs.  Lovers and loyalists of the DC-3.  Ex-pilots of the DC-4.  Men and women who served during WW II – especially if they wore the uniform & earned the insignia of the Army Air Corp.  Let’s see if any of them can add to the Veterans Air story!

It gives me the Gooney Bird Bumps (sorry!) to bring this to you.

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