P-38 Lightning Home Page Donate to the P-38 Association Join the P-38 Association

Milo Burcham

Burcham at the counter of the Portland Army Air Base operations building in September of 1944.

Burcham, flying a P‑38 with incredible ease and skill, put his ship through some of the most difficult maneuvers in flying in a flight over PAAB. Besides being tremendously exciting, his flight proved to be an invaluable source of inspiration to the pilot trainees of the 432nd Army Air Force Base Unit who would soon be flying P‑38’s exclusively. 

Milo Burcham quote about the P-38 training

Milo Garrett Burcham

Milo Burcham joined Lockheed in either 1937 or 1941 (depending on which bio you believe) as a production test pilot.

Due to his vast experience as in engineering flight testing, Burcham did most of the test flying on the P‑38. In his short life he flew more P-38 test flights than any other pilot at the time.

Burcham became Chief Engineering Test Pilot for Lockheed, and performed a 55-degree dive from 35,000 feet in the P-38. 

Milo Burcham on P-38 "Yippee"Milo Burcham on the wing of "Yippee" - the
5,000th P-38 produced.

Sadly, this great test pilot died at the young age of 41 when a prototype plane (YP-80) he was testing flamed out on take-off.





Milo Burcham P-38 Test Pilot

Milo Burcham
24 MAY 1903 – 20 OCT 1944

The "Flight Characteristics" P-38 DVD contains Milo Burcham walking P-38 pilots through the flight training for the Lightning. It will give you new respect for these young men who had to learn how to fly this "ship" (as Burcham calls it).

Flight Characteristics

Buy now from P-38 Store

Also includes
 P-38 Reconnaissance Pilot 
Starring William Holden
 Angel in Overalls 
A film about US P‑38
production line workers

 Yamamoto Shot Down! 
Meet the P‑38 Squadron that shot down Admiral Yamamoto, the architect of the attack on Pearl Harbor, in an incredible long distance interception in the Pacific. Includes gun camera footage of the Admiral's Betty going down in flames.
 Dick Bong Pacific Ace 
This film pays tribute to Richard "Dick" Bong, the leading American ace of World War II, who exclusively flew P‑38.

Buy now from P-38 Store