MELBOURNE - Melbourne resident Ed Mason made an incredible donation to the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum in Titusville when he gave them an exquisite model of a C-47 aircraft.
The plane, which Mr. Mason says is constructed out balsa wood, hardwood, plywood, fiberglass, plastic, features a 7-foot wingspan with a 5.5-foot fuselage. He also notes that it’s a two-engine plane and could fly now if need be.
The donated plane was just one of 16 model planes he says he’s built, with at least some flown competitively. Mr. Mason noted that he’s constructed B-29s, Constellations and B-17s among the other planes he’s built as well.
“It keeps me active and doing something that I really enjoy doing. It’s so gratifying to see something and the end of the day ‘that’s what I did today” rather than maybe playing golf, you pay your greens fees, you’re done,” Mr. Mason said. “You got a scorecard. With something you can build physically, you can see it, I can look at it and I enjoy that.”
What’s even more impressive is how long Mr. Mason says it took him to complete the plane, about a year with Mr. Mason noting “that’s working on it every day.”
Bob Boswell, executive director of the museum, said that he and others at the museum were “shocked and so pleased” by the donation.
“I’ll tell you, it is an absolute beautiful airplane. It means a lot to us to have something like that on display that we can help reference our museum in our memorabilia area,” said Bob Boswell, executive director of the Valiant Air Command Warbird Air Museum. “We placed right in the entrance rotunda. Ed and his friends had made a stand for the airplane and they brought that stand in so it looked like it’s playing and that little bit of a turn and it is absolutely beautiful.”
Mr. Boswell noted just how hard Mr. Mason worked on the plane, noting that he studied and worked on his model plane based off a Normandy Invasion C-47 at the museum.
“He copied every detail of that airplane and built this model exactly as the airplane flies,” Mr. Boswell added. “….The detail is immaculate. We saw him on the floor out there, he spent days doing all this.”
The museum, located at 6600 Tico Road at the Space Coast Regional Airport, is open from 9 a.m- 5 p.m. on Wednesday through Sundays. Those interested in more information about the museum itself should visit valiantaircommand.com.