Jim Tobul flies the “Korean War Hero” F4U-4 Corsair , an exciting tribute to the men and machines that fought to defend democracy and freedom in the Korean Conflict from 1950 – 1953. The Korean War Hero F4U4 Corsair has a legendary history. She served two tours on two different carriers. She has the distinction of flying over 200 combat missions from June thru October 1951 aboard the USS Boxer (CV21), VF884 Naval Reserve Squadron from Olathe, Kansas.
This squadron was known as the “Bitter Birds” using the Kansas Jayhawk on their jacket patch. This squadron patch emblem consisted of a dragon holding a shield which had a golden triangle and a checkerboard stripe.
The golden triangle signified the large percentage of Pittsburgh-area pilots in the squadron. The checkerboard stripe salutes skipper Lt. Cmdr. Cook Cleland’s two victories in the Cleveland National Air Races, who won both times with Corsairs.
From about 1960 to 1970, the aircraft flew with the Honduran Air Force. In 1970 it was sold to an American Airline pilot and brought to the USA. Joe and Jim Tobul bought the airplane in 1981 and started a long rebuilding project.
Ten years later Korean War Hero proudly flew again on
December 8, 1991, fittingly over the Pittsburgh skies.