Helen Murphy © 2009-2107 All Rights Reserved
Julie Clark
"Top Banana"
American Aerobatics, Inc.

Many people ask me why the name “Top Banana”?  When I first purchased the big yellow airplane, I knew along with all Navy markings, I wanted to associate 140549 (BU#) with my airline career where I was the first female pilot at Hughes Airwest (1977) where we flew bright yellow DC-9’s – (the airline then became Republic Airlines (1980) merged again 1986, became Northwest – I retired in 2004 – and now “we” are Delta! – quick summary!)
At Hughes Airwest we were the “Top Banana in the West” – so I wanted to immortalize my first airline which gave me my first job as a “major” airline pilot – so thus I used the original logo and replaced the DC-9 caricature with the T-28!
click here for the full story on Julie's T-28

T-28 Trojan Foundation

Excerpt from Julie's book:
We were flying in a 9 ship formation and concentrating as usual...we were about 90 miles away from Oshkosh when I had an emergency in my T-28.  I knew it was bad.  Smoke pouring from a round engine is very bad.  The chip light came on and I started losing power.  I radioed "Mayday" and immediately pulled up and out of the formation.  I'd lost all of my oil.  My engine had failed.  I asked Lead, "where the hell are we?"  He said, "turn left to a heading of 220 degrees, you're eleven miles from Kenosha." 
I said, "eleven miles? I'll never make it." ....
click on book cover for more information
SkyDoc (far left in blue shirt) and Julie at Kenosha, WI 1999 
Photo courtesy of SkyDoc
Click on thumbnails to enlarge
Photo's 2013 T-28 Formation Clinic Sheboygan, WI