Lt. Edward Sizer Biography-2

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Historic Flight of XP3Y-1 Flying Boat:

Oct 13-14, 1935

In the early 1930s, with the prospect of war beginning to loom over the horizon, the Consolidated Aircraft Corporation was selected to build new generation of patrol flying boats for the Navy. Their initial XP3Y-1 prototype was completed and ready for testing in March 1935. In October 1935, the XP3Y-1 prepared for a record flight from Norfolk, VA to Cristobal Harbor, Canal Zone, and then to a west coast port in one jump. Veteran Navy pilot Lt. Commander Knefler McGiniss was assigned to lead this initiative:

“In the first part of October we flew the plane direct from Norfolk to Coco Solo (Panama), and after stop overnight, we took off on the 14th of October and flew the 3,443 miles nonstop to Alameda, California. This broke all previous straight line distances and broken line distances for this class of seaplane.”

In a world still enthralled by Lindbergh’s transatlantic flight, and at the dawn of modern aviation, this world distance record was headline news all across the US. “ The Navy’s new golden-winged seaplane XP3Y-1 arrived here (Oakland CA) today from Panama and Lieutenant Commander Knefler McGinnis said he believed the trim experimental craft has established a new world’s non-stop record for seaplanes….Sweeping in from the sky like a giant glider….the big plane completed it long flight in 34 hours and 51 minutes…”

The Consolidated XP3Y-1 was the forerunner of the most successful US-built flying boat during World War II and the most-produced boat of all time, the PBY Catalina.

The XP3Y-1 prototype was powered by two 825 hp Pratt & Whitney R-1830-54 Twin Wasp radial engines, manufactured by United Aircraft Corporation. It was United Aircraft that presented an Elgin Avigo watch to each of the six crew members to commemorate the world record flight.