What a storm! The events of the day pale in comparison to the storm that tore through Stratford and Bridgeport,Ct. As it turns out the thunder storm / monsoon that hit the Connecticut Air and Space Center cause some serious damage around Bridgeport,Ct.
I was standing in the main shop with Rich Jersey and George Scali when we noticed what looked like paint blowing around in the hanger. I thought it was paint flaking off the celling or something. When we walked out into the Main hanger and looked towards our roll up doors it was like looking in a grey vortex. The sky in 5 min had turned an evil shade of grey. Wind was charging through the hanger to where we could feel it from a door that is over a 150 feet away.
Rich commented to George , “My windows are open!” . And they beat feet across the hanger to AREA 53 to close the bay doors and batten down the hatches. I headed around the front of the building to shut the bay doors by the media blasting room and to kill all the fans and power. By the time I had made it to the front of the building all hell had broken loose with lightning and thunder and rain. The rain just kept coming.
Now when you come in the front door there is a long hallway that has some displays about the museum and the Corsair Project. As I rounded the corner I was met with a 16×20 Picture frame flying right at me. It hit the floor and broke missing me than god. The damage was done,water 3 in deep was in the hallway, the wind pinning the door open. After going outside to close it I was drenched. As I headed back to AREA 53 I killed the power to the shop. I was instantaneously left in a black void. It was around 2:20 in the afternoon, but it seemed more like 11:00 at night.
The old hanger building made an myriad of groans and frightening sounds. It was like walking through a haunted house or a bad movie set for a horror film. Wind was charging through vents and reversing fans in the walls. As I got to the area between the hanger and AREA 53, all I could see was sheets of rain. It is better described as first it was a thick grey fog, like clouds fallen from heaven, sliding across the large open lot then sheets of rain. It appeared more like a wind tunnel testing center. Rain buffed by the wind made my car and Georges jeep look like a test subject . I think my Focus winds the Aerodynamics contest.
In the end there was 6 inchs of water across the yard area and Sniffens road was flooded. This was from 5 min of rain. All was still secured with the exception of our parade float which saw some minor damage from the wind.
Several of are secure in the fact that if the Corsair was still atop the pole at the airport, that this would have been the storm that brought it down. Crumpled into a mass of aluminum or with a section tore free and tossed across the airport parking lot.
Check out a related story from Yahoo.
Also the Connecticut Post