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The Untold Story of General Chuck Yeager & Me
special appearance by Tom Wolfe
It was exciting entering the Ziegfeld theater lobby in New York while the media was scrambling for interviews with Sam Shepard, Ed Harris, Barbra Hershey and Veronica Cartwright at the premiere of The Right Stuff in 1983.
What really caught my eye was on the other side of the crowd standing unnoticed by a two sheet movie poster of the space epic was the legendary test pilot, and my childhood hero United States Air Force officer, flying ace, and record-setting test pilot General Chuck Yeager, and no one had any idea who he was.
I was 16 years old when I signed up to join the Civil Air Patrol to see if I had the right stuff to be an astronaut by first learning how to fly prop planes at Brooklyn's Floyd Bennett field in 1966.
At the dawn of supersonic flight in the 1950's all the B-Movies like "Toward the Unknown" starring William Holden, filmed scenes with these state of the art aircraft at Edwards Air Force Base, and that's when I learned about the first test pilot to break the sound barrier.
I went to my local Kingshighway Public library to read up on the air base only to find out there were no books on the subject matter because that part of history was still be written.
That night I left my friends on line and made a mad nervous dash over to shake the the hand of the first man who on October 14th 1947, less than a month after the U.S. Air Force had been created as a separate service broke the sound barrier.
I remember walking right up, almost just taking his hand in mine to shake and thanking him for sending me an autograph picture twenty years earlier, that still hangs in my apartment when I joined the civil air patrol.
He asked me what my flight status was, I thought for a second and said I definitely had the right stuff when it came to model building and roll playing about the exploits of others, but I rather write about those making history like you sir.
The man standing next to him laughed, and Yeager looked at him and said "he wants your job", and I soon left. I do remember hearing the man say to Yeager, "and you thought no one would recognize you."
Its when I joined the group I was with they all wanted to know what did I talk about with Tom Wolfe, who was the man standing next to Yeager, and I had no idea what Wolfe look like at the time, but I only had my eyes on the master of the skies, when we had real hero's to look up to.
and so it goes....
Being a Revel model builder I already put together the Bell X1 MiG-15, X-3, X-4 XF-92 .and of course the X-15 along with writing fan letters, and asking for autographs from all the test pilots at Edwards Airforce Base.
Press Kits Included: Project Gemini 4, Project Gemini 7/6 and a kit for the Surveyor B mission to the moon in 1966, and Voyagers trip to Mars.