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Remembering The Flying Tiger Line

Flying Tiger Line, also known as Flying Tigers, was the first scheduled cargo airline in the United States and a major military charter operator during the Cold War era for both cargo and personnel. The airline was bought by Federal Express in 1988.

The company was started by Robert William Prescott. It was headquartered on the grounds of Los Angeles International Airport in Westchester, Los Angeles, California.

The airline was named after the Flying Tigers fighter unit of World War II, officially the 1st American Volunteer Group. Ten former AVG pilots formed the Flying Tiger Line (established as National Skyway Freight) after returning to the United States in 1945, using a small fleet of Budd Company C-93 Conestoga freighters purchased as war surplus from the United States Navy. The pilots and two ground crew provided half of the initial investment, with the balance coming from California oil tycoon Samuel B. Mosher. For the next four years, Flying Tiger Line carried air freight on contract throughout the U.S. and, as the airline expanded, carrying supplies to U.S. troops under Gen. Douglas MacArthur during the occupation of Japan… read more >

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