aviation history

Museum Receives Donation of Aircraft Models and Memorabilia

The Greater St. Louis Air & Space Museum received a generous donation of aircraft models, plastic and wood, along with aviation memorabilia from area architect and World War II veteran Mr. Bill Duncan.  Aviation was an early influence on young Bill, with aircraft often flying low over his house in Zanesville, Ohio.  He and a neighbor friend bought 5-cent balsa models, built them, and sold them in a local store for 15 cents.  “I thought I was pretty rich,” he said.  He enlisted in the Navy during the war years, having known “Butch” O’Hare.  The Navy did not accept him due to dental issues, so he went to the Army who did take him in and he was off to flight school in 1943.  He was 20 years old in 1944 when he graduated flight school.  He served in the Training Command in Hondo, Texas flying navigator trainees in Beech AT-7 Navigators.  After the war years, Mr. Duncan went on to become an architect, working on large projects around the world.  Even though he did not keep up with flying, he continued to construct models and take flights with friends on occasion.

The museum appreciates the donation of Mr. Duncan’s aircraft models and memorabilia, and they will soon be incorporated into the museum’s displays.  Mr. Duncan is pictured below (right) with museum Curator, Jack Abercrombie.