Did you know this about Clare Bunch? From the Orlando Sentinel newspaper, March 1, 1971.
The war and financial troubles closed down the Monocoupe factory in Florida. But it didn’t stop Bunch. He joined Gen. Jimmy Doolittle and, while he won’t say too much about his war experiences, the late Quentin Reynolds wrote this in his book, “The Amazing Mr. Doolittle”:
“That afternoon Duncan took off for Pearl Harbor: Doolittle headed from Wright Field. He took Lt. Clare Bunch, a brilliant aeronautical engineer, with him.
“The Wright Field personnel had been ordered to give Doolittle any assistance he wanted. They were considerably puzzled at the strange things he and Bunch did with a B-25 during the next 10 days.
“Doolittle and Bunch worked day and night figuring out ways to lighten the airplane. After a week, its own father, Dutch Kindelberger, wouldn’t have known his brain child. Doolittle was satisfied now that it could do the job.”
The job was the first bombing raid on Tokyo, and the B-25’s, adapted for carrier takeoffs, successfully bombed the city.
Following the war years, Bunch returned to Orlando, He now lives in Maitland, does consultant work for aerospace companies – and remembers the “Finest” airplane he ever saw, The Monocoupe.