Douglas C-47 Skytrain

     Few aircraft are as well known or were so widely used for so long as the C-47 or "Gooney Bird" as it was affectionately nicknamed. The aircraft was adapted from the DC-3 commercial airliner which appeared in 1936. The first C-47s were ordered in 1940 and by the end of WW II, 9,348 had been procured for AAF use. They carried personnel and cargo, and in a combat role, towed troop-carrying gliders and dropped paratroops into enemy territory.  It was he most widely used military transport in World War II.  It saw service with the U.S. Navy as the R4D and with the RAF as the Dakota.
     After WWII, many C-47s remained in USAF service, participating in the Berlin Airlift and other peace-time activities. One hundred C-47J aircraft were reengineered by Douglas and incorporated new wings, a new, taller vertical tail, modified landing gear, and more powerful engines. They entered U.S. Navy service under designation C-117D.
    During the Korean Conflict, C-47s hauled supplies, dropped paratroops, evacuated wounded and dropped flares for night bombing attacks. In Vietnam, the C-47 served again as a transport, but it was also used for a variety of other missions which included flying ground attack, reconnaissance, and psychological warfare missions. The AC-47 "Spooky", a heavily-armed gunship version of the C-47, was equipped with three side-firing 7.62mm Miniguns and was nicknamed "Puff the Magic Dragon."
     The last C-47 was retired from the U.S. Air Force in 1975.
See the many different display models of the C-47 at