Missing Captain John…

March 4th, 2023

Hard to believe a year has passed since Captain John departed onto his forever flight. His presence has remained with me in all aspects, as I and 49Bravo continue his legacy. Thoughts of him have been especially strong (and welcomed) as I get back into the air after six months on the ground. I am reminded, and certainly agree, with what Captain John would always say of being on the ground to long… boy, my feet sure are getting sore! I know he would be very happy with the way things are progressing, and I know he would have that big special smile on his face, knowing that 49Bravo is once again roaring back into air, heading up to that very special place, a place that he loved so much!

I have found out, during my life, that you can never fill the void that is left behind by a passed loved one, but the great memories you have made with them sure will help to smooth it over… you will realize this is true, when every time you think of them you smile!

Welcome to “Wings Around America”

Thank you for visiting my website, I created “Wings Around America” to document the amazing flight around our Country that Captain John and I made back in 2015. Since then, I have documented most every adventure that he and I enjoyed together, of which there were many, including our Angel Flights. After his passing at the age of 98 on March 4th, 2022, I have, in his honor, continued this site, documenting my endeavors as I continue (to the best of my ability) to carry on his amazing legacy. Please feel free to roam around through the menu selections and scroll down thru this homepage to see the latest happenings. There is also a search tool for typing in a topic to see if it is covered in my many archives… for example, type in “Operation Greenup” and see what you find.

For those that do not know, I have been grounded since last August due to metal being found in 49Bravo’s oil. She had nearly made TBO (Time Between Overhaul), so I made the “not so easy” decision to have the major overhaul done. Up to that point in August, I am proud to say that I completed 12 Angel Flight Missions in his honor. John had completed an amazing total of 462 missions, with his last being right after his 98th birthday! I am so proud to say that we shared 49Bravo’s cockpit together on 350 of those!

I am now happy to say that I am back in the air and in the process of breaking in 49Bravo’s newly overhauled engine. This is a process that requires a certain type of flying to assure the piston rings get seated into their happy place… this will make the prospect of a long healthy engine life a good one. As you scroll down thru this homepage, you will see the stages of 49Bravo’s Engine Adventure… with the latest event here (next) at the top. Thank you so much for taking the time to visit my site, and if you are not already getting email notices of my latest post, please leave your name and email in the place provided at the bottom of this page. There is also a place at the bottom to leave a reply, which would be most welcome!

Thanks again from “Wings Around America”…. (Nevin Showman)

….. The Adventures of 49Bravo’s Engine Overhaul …..


March 1st, 2023

On this two-hour flight I kept 49Bravo at around 75% power the entire time, this is needed to allow the piston rings to seat. I departed on runway 22, climbed up to 3500 feet, and circled above the town of Luray. This allowed me to keep the airport in view as I kept watch over engine performance. As a little time passed, and my confidence grew with how she was performing, I headed northeast for a while. All was great, so I headed back southwest, past the airport, and continued down around the south end of the Massanutten, all the while staying at 3500 feet and high power (the winds were fairly strong, and while flying with a tailwind, my speed was getting up to around 190 mph). I then headed west over Harrisonburg and Broadway, then northeast again up along Old Valley Pike and Interstate 81. At the north end of the Massanutten, I turned east around Signal Knob, and headed back up through Page Valley towards the airport. After landing and tucking 49Bravo back into her hanger, I removed her cowlings for inspection. Stephen, from over at Aircraft Maintenace Solutions, came over and gave her a complete check over, finding no leaks or anomalies whatsoever, this was very good news!

It was definitely a thumbs up after this high-power two-hour flight!

My next flight will also be a high-power run, and once completed, my third landing… that means I will then be legal to carry passengers once again! One of the many rules of flying as pilot in command is in order to carry passengers, you must have logged at least three take off and landings within the previous 90 days, and with 49Bravo’s engine overhaul, I had not flown at all until now within the past six months.


February 22nd, 2023

After six months of being grounded, 49Bravo has her newly overhauled engine installed, and I have completed the first test flight! Here is a little video I have compiled, showing in photos, the basic timeline of this overhaul adventure.

Hope you enjoy!

December 28th, 2022

49Bravo’s overhauled engine is now complete and back at Luray ready to be reinstalled!

October 10th, 2022

49Bravo’s engine has been delivered down to Aerodyne Corporation, in Chesapeake, Virginia. Her four cylinders have been removed and shipped to Gibson Aviation, in El Reno, Oklahoma.

September 2022

49Bravos engine is disassembled and removed by the guys at Aircraft Maintenance Solutions, at our home base… Luray, Virginia.

August 25th, 2022

This was 49Bravo’s last flight before a routine oil change revealed metal fragments in her oil filter. This certainly was not good news, especially since the time on her engine from the last major overhaul was at 1953 hours (2000 is the recommended limit). Captain John and I had both known this time was coming sooner than later, but we, and then I, had been hoping to get a couple of hundred more hours before overhaul would be needed. After a lot of thought, I just came to the conclusion this was a blessing in disguise.

This last flight on the 25th of August was the 12th Angel Flight Mission that I had completed last year, and even though this presented a major hurdle to cross over in terms of getting back into the air, I planned on moving forward so as to continue the legacy of my great friend, Captain John.

2 thoughts on “”

  1. Hi Nevin,
    It looks like they did a good job on the engine. I’m glad you’re back in the air and zooming around–bet you’re feet are feeling better already. Be careful up there and have fun. Dick Olson

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