What do we all love? A come-back story. One of the fabled Grumman “cats,” the F7F-3’s flight path is about redemption–how “the best damn fighter in the world” was literally rescued from the graveyard. Though the Tigercat was originally designed as a combat carrier plane, it never saw service in World War II. That said, this twin-engine fighter combined the power and stealth needed for ground missions in the Korean War, and also found a niche in photo reconnaissance. But it was sorely underused, and every Tigercat would have been turned into scrap metal if it weren’t for another innovation—a second career fighting forest fires. Our F7F-3, one of only 6 Tigercats still flying today, can tell the story.
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