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P-40 Warhawk

Suspended in the lobby of the Main Campus building is a Curtiss P-40N Warhawk, painted pink. Not just a light-hearted display piece, this plane was donated by Suzanne Parish [direct link to 6.4M pdf]. Parish was a WASP pilot during WWII who, year later, started collecting planes. She located a P-40, had it rebuilt, and flew it at air shows for many years. In 1977 she and her husband founded the Kalamazoo Aviation History Museum, which eventually became the Air Zoo.

The pink paint job is meant to evoke the desert tan camouflage (which the sun eventually fades into a shade of pink) -- although the long eye lashes on the nose art certainly add a (more overt) feminine touch.

The fuselage is adorned with a Fly Tigers emblem, even though I believe that all of their planes were painted in more customary olive drab schemes.

 
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