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McDonnell Douglas test pilot flight suit

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This week I was able to add to my collection a Flight Suits Ltd. flight suit, that belonged to Frederick (Fred) Albert Madenwald III. Born in 1951 he passed away in 2012.

During 2016 a lot of his personal items, related to his flight test career were on sale. A pity to see that one man’s legacy has been torn apart and spread around the globe.

I hope to track his blue USMC marked flight test suit that was also for sale several years ago.


In his career, Mr. Fred Madenwald was the F-35 Integrated Test Force (ITF) Site Manager & Test Director with Lockheed Martin at Edwards AFB.

Throughout his career, he led Flight Test teams for different programs such as F-15E, F/A-18, V-22, & 767 Tanker, to name a few.

He directed Flight Test at NAS China Lake, Eglin AFB, Edwards AFB, NAS Pax River, and St. Louis.



Mr. Madenwald has served 22 years in the USMC & the USMC Reserves. He has flown the A-4, F-4 and F/A-18A.

He completed a Master's degree in Aerospace Engineering, followed by more than 20 years of Marine Corps service as a fighter pilot and a test pilot.

He served two tours as an instructor pilot at Patuxent River Naval Air Station Test Pilot School. After retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel, Fred worked another 20 years as an experimental test pilot and flight test director.

He was honoured by being elected as Fellow in the Society of Experimental Test Pilots. In the full span of his career, he logged over 4,000 hours in more than 11 different tactical aircraft



He is well known for piloting the McDonnell Douglas' F/A-18E Super Hornet abbreviated first flight from St. Louis Lambert International Airport on Nov. 29 1995.

The aircraft was flown to a maximum altitude of 10,000 ft. and speed of 250 kt. An environmental control system caution light cut the planned 70-min. flight short to 26 min.

Fred was also involved in flight testing the Finish Air Force F/A-18's.





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