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Inside they found a bunch of parachutes, maps, and the operational procedures on flying a C-47 written in German.

The two officers, acting as pilot and co-pilot, fired up the engines and took off leaving he and the other airmen on the ground to hike back. The ceramics teacher told me that at the time he thought the whole thing sounded farfetched until one day the airman that told him the story came by and handed him a large envelope.

The museum is conveniently located adjacent to the now closed one time Castle Air Force Base previously operated under the auspices of the Strategic Air Command.

The exhibits, which are mostly outdoors, display over 50 restored World War II, Korean War, Cold War, and edging into Vietnam era aircraft --- of which one is the vintage B-29 Superfortress pictured above.

The airman told him he had taken it from the C-47 the day they found it and stuffed it in his his shirt without anybody's knowledge.

Because the existence of the C-47 fitting perfectly into the scenario I knew about the late-in-1944 , or at least their attempt to do so thereof, and thinking I had a goldmine on my hands because of it, I asked to see the operations procedures.

Sitting neatly in their holders near pilot and co-pilot's seats were flight charts mostly related to Mexico and Baja California along with instructional and operational manuals all written in German.

Years later, and at the time unrelated to any of the above, I learned that a former high school classmate of mine was in the process of restoring the top of my list favorite aircraft, a , the venerable World War II fighter made famous by the Flying Tigers --- albeit in this case, a Pearl Harbor survivor --- to it's full and flight worthy status.

Once he told me the plane went down in 1952 I sort of lost interest.

Up to that point in my life I had only garnered a few vague inferences of the C-47.

Thinking there might be hard evidence laying around on the side of some mountain somewhere set my ears on fire.

The plane was stripped of all except bare necessities, even the landing and anti-collision lights were gone.

The only thing inside were 20 or so brand-new parachutes divided and stacked along each side of the cargo bay, double the amount in count of bailout rations and canned water.

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