In 2007, over eighty P-51 Mustangs and hundreds of WWII aviation Legends including Fighter Aces, Tuskegee Airmen and WASPs, along with thousands of spectators, came together for the “Gathering of Mustangs and Legends” at Rickenbacker Airport in Columbus, Ohio.
The P-51 is commonly credited with being a pivotal element in the Allied Forces’ victory in World War II. Hermann Goering, the head of Hitler’s Luftwaffe, said it all when he stated, “The day I saw P-51 Mustang flying over Berlin, I knew the jig was up.” Since the military retired the P-51 Mustang, the aircraft has been purchased by civilians and restored to their original glory. Of the over 15,000 Mustangs produced, approximately 150 remain in flying condition today.
The Gathering brought together over 80 beautifully restored P-51 aircraft with 51 of the heroes, legends, and aces forever connected to these aircraft. At the event, the skies were filled with the P-51 aircraft in addition to other World War II fighters and bombers, civilian airshow performers and the Air Force Thunderbirds.
Many other aircraft attended this special one-time only event as well. You have to see and hear these planes in flight to appreciate the sights and deep harmonious sounds produced by 20 Rolls-Royce Merlin-powered Mustangs passing by!
In this segment, 20 Mustangs take off and form up to create a Giant “51” in the sky above Rickenbacker Airport.