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Our project's goal - break the existing record of 763 mph (1,228 km/h) by reaching 800 mph (1,287 km/h)!

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NAE™ Project: Update

Featured Sponsors

Opto 22

November 12, 2008

Ladies & Gentlemen:

The following message was sent to our owner/driver - Ed Shadle - the day after our appearance at the Motorsports 2008 Show in the Tacoma Dome. We share it with you here to illustrate how our project has connected with several people over the years.

Hello Ed, I have a quick story for you that is really hard to believe.  Last year I saw the story of the NAE™ on the Discovery Channel.  Was quite interested as the F-104 has always been in my blood.  I was born at Edwards AFB in 1957, my father was a tech rep for GE® doing design work on the J-79 at the time.  Many of my Dad's friends were people of the right stuff - quite literally. 

Last Sunday I went to the Tacoma show with my wife and some friends for the car show, walked in and much to my surprise there was the NAE™, I had no idea that it was going to be there.  I talked for a while to some of your volunteers and just had the strangest feeling about the car.

Queenie II in 1962
Queenie II in 01/62


I lost my father in a plane crash in December of 2004. He was my best friend and we were pretty much inseperable. Well, when I got home I pulled out a brief case that I had filled with some of Dad's Edwards stuff; We'd gone through his belongings after the funeral. I pulled up your web site and under classroom and then history of 56-0763  I saw a picture that I could not believe, I was holding the same photo in my hand, my Dad is the first guy in the bottom row of the picture, Craig Markley.  We remained good friends with some of the other guys in the photo even after leaving Edwards for Vandenberg AFB, and then the Kennedy Space Center where Dad worked directly with several of the astronauts during the moon shots.  Back to your car... before she was a chase plane she was a test bed for GE®. Dad had tons of stories about her; her name was "Queenie II " as she had 4 queens from a deck of cards painted on her forward fuselage. [According to David, "Queenie" was lost with pilot Sweeny Davis, who was flying tail number 52969 for GE®, when it went down sometime in the early sixites.

Queenie w/ pilots

I have always been in love with her, and just can't believe that she still exists and may one day have her time in the spotlight again as the fastest car in the world.  I just wish that my Dad was here to share the experience.  I am not sure what I am going to do about this, but I am going to do something to help your cause. I know the fuel control on the J-79 was manufactured by the Woodward Governor Company where I spent 23 years as a machinist, then manager. I have some connections there still and need to think about how I could get them to possibly help with your cause.  I will give it some thought.  

You are free to use the attached photos in any way that you wish, I might be able to contact some of Dad's friends for more background info on Queenie, if you would like.  Not sure that there is any value in more background info, but it's up to you. 

God's Speed,
David Markley



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