Caribbean Dreaming

Regular contributor Ron Mak delves into his archive to give us a fascinating look at traffic operating out of St Thomas in the US Virgin Islands between 1979 and 1981.

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Eastern Air Lines accepted delivery of Boeing 727-200, N8122N (c/n 18273), in November 1964. The venerable tri-jet was sold to Memphis-based FedEx Express in May 1989 and registered as N503FE. It was withdrawn from use to Mojave Airport, California, in October 1999 and scrapped in 2003.

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During the author’s visit, this Fairchild F-27F – a licence-built Fokker F27 Friendship – was operated briefly by Puerto Rican operator Oceanair as N3NR (c/n 030). Delivered to Mexican carrier Secretaria de Hacienda in 1959, it served with the country’s air force before being utilised by multiple airlines including Las Vegas-based Bonanza Airlines and Hughes Air West. After its short Oceanair stint between 1981-1982, the Rolls-Royce Dart-powered aircraft remained in the region until being scrapped in Florida in 2003.

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