Design of the Neptune began during World War II to meet the U.S. Navy’s requirement for a large land-based patrol plane. The aircraft’s first flight took place in May 1945 and despite the end of the war in August development of the Neptune continued with deliveries beginning in late 1946. The P2V-7 is the last version of the Neptune produced and included the addition of two jet engines to supplement the aircraft’s pair of propellers. Many Neptunes were converted to fire fighters after their military service and a few continued to operate in this role as late as 2016.
Black Hills Aviation, Inc., Alamogordo, New Mexico, 1975
Pima Air & Space Museum