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A model piece of history

Ben Godar

The “Connie” has returned to Burbank.

A scale model of the Lockheed Constellation, one of the nation’s

earliest commuter airplanes, is now hanging on display over the main

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entrance to the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport.

The model is the second in a series of vintage airplanes that are

scheduled to be displayed at the airport, spokesman Victor Gill said.

It joins a model of a P-38 Lightning, and officials plan to add a

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replica SR-71 Blackbird and a replica F-117A Nighthawk.

Displaying the scale models is a way to celebrate the aviation

history of Burbank, Gill said. Adding the displays to the airport is

part of the facility’s celebration of its 75th anniversary as well as

the 100th anniversary of aviation, he said. Airport officials have

already sponsored several events to celebrate the anniversary,

including a reception in March at which a real Constellation took

flight.

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The Constellation was used by the military during World War II,

but continued to be used as a passenger aircraft during the 1940s and

1950s, Gill said, adding that he hopes the display will bring back

memories for residents who helped build the plane as well as

passengers who flew on it.

“A great many people got their first experience as airline

passengers on the Constellation,” he said.

Millard Coffman, vice president of the Burbank Aviation Museum,

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took one flight on a Constellation. While the airliner was not as

successful as models made by McDonnell Douglas, he said it was a

beautiful plane.

“It was a very modern design and a good aircraft,” he said. “I

don’t know why it wasn’t more successful.”


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