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Historian discusses the RF-84K and other parasite aircraft

DAYTON, Ohio -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force Research Historian Jeff Duford will present "Parasite Aircraft: Extending Range without Aerial Tanking" on Jan. 30 at 7 p.m. in the museum's Carney Auditorium.

The lecture will focus on the Republic RF-84K "Thunderflash," which is now on display in the museum's Cold War Gallery, as well as earlier parasite aircraft such as the Sperry Messenger.

The RF-84K's primary mission was photographic reconnaissance and was carried near the target underneath a modified B-36. After completing the mission, it would return and hook back up to the B-36. Only 25 RF-84Ks were ever built, and the museum's example is one of the few still left in existence.

The presentation, which is part of the museum's Volunteer Information Program, is free and open to the public. Call (937) 255-8099, ext. 313, for additional information.

Duford received his master's degree in history from Eastern Michigan University in 1997. During his more than nine years on the museum staff, his work has included curating exhibits, giving lectures and providing research support for restoration projects.

The National Museum of the United States Air Force is located on Springfield Pike, six miles northeast of downtown Dayton. It is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week (closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day). Admission and parking are free.

NOTE TO PUBLIC: For more information, contact the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force at (937) 255-8046, ext. 313.

NOTE TO MEDIA: For more information, contact Rob Bardua at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force Public Affairs Division at (937) 255-4704, ext. 330.

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