When Jeeps Fly…

It’s Veteran’s Day today.  Like every year, a time for us to personally reflect and thank those we know and those we’ve never met for their service to the USA. Like last Veteran’s Day, jeepwaves.com is bringing you some interesting historical notes from WWII – Jeep related of course.

This year, it’s a story about when Jeeps fly…seriously.  Excerpts taken from the book Citizen Soldiers, by Stephen Ambrose, recall the first solo flight recorded in a Jeep.  In WWII, the US military had a sizable fleet of gliders used to deliver troops and equipment into battle, often behind enemy lines, by gliding in just above the ground. In March of 1945, a Jeep and a medic, Pvt. Wallace Thompson, were loaded into the front of a glider (likely a Waco CG-4A) with two pilots.  Then, things got interesting:

“Over the target, just a few meters above the ground, an 88 shell burst just behind Thompson’s jeep. The concussion broke the latches of the nose section, which flipped up and locked, throwing the pilots out.  The blast cut the ropes that held the jeep, which leaped out ahead of the glider, engine running, flying through the air at high speed, Thompson gripping the steering wheel with all his might.  He made a perfect four-wheel landing and beat the glider to the ground, thus becoming the first man in history to solo in a jeep.”

As if that wasn’t enough, after landing, Thompson proceeded to drive his Jeep over to the two pilots who were injured in the landing. He then treated their wounds, and drove them to an aid station.  A story of heroism from all involved and an impressive number for our beloved Jeep to boot!  A little reminder next time your Jeep gets “airborne” on the trail…it could be worse.

The rest of the book is definitely worth a read, but we thought this little excerpt would be a fun read and a good reminder just how intertwined the Jeep is with the history of those who defend our country.  So, as we pay respect to our Veterans today, give a Jeep a wave if you see one!

Crawl To A Cure 2.0

The second annual Crawl To A Cure event went off in Eagle, CO at the fair grounds last week. With a goal to raise money in the fight against breast cancer, off road machines from all around Colorado came out to race around the course.

Like last year, the rain / snow / sleet came in right on cue and muddied up the course. It was cold and the crowds weren’t quite as big as last year, but the folks that did show up sure weren’t lacking any enthusiasm.

There were two classes of vehicles, some that were mostly stock that ran on the small course and some built up rigs that ran the big course.  In some respects, seeing what the stock-ish Jeeps could do was a lot of fun.  Nothing impresses us more than watching a Jeep more or less off the factory line do things you don’t think it can do…like catch air.

That said, it wasn’t all roses for the regular sized Jeeps.  While you can see the big wall in the background, the little stack in front caused some problems when one lady took a turn driving her husband’s rig and got a little hung up.

All in all, good fun for the first round, but we were excited to see the big rigs come out next.  Now, hard to tell if some of these were Jeeps…all that was left was and engine, wheels, some seats, and a vague outline of a frame.  AKA:  Crawling Machines.

The most impressive part of the whole deal was seeing who could get up and over the big wall.  Looking at it before the start of the event, and based on last year’s showing, we didn’t think anyone was gonna make it.  Stretched up in front of the wall, you can see how big it was…

Surprisingly, or not, depending on your faith in your Jeep, a couple rigs made it up and over. The most impressive one was probably this green monster that made quick work of the big wall.  HUGE!

All in all, a really fun event again this year.  We’re glad to support a good cause and have some fun at the same time.  We hope to do it again next year!

Featured Jeeps

A little something new to add to the website this month.  We’ve added a featured Jeep Wave section to the front page.  After collecting quite a few customer submitted images over the past couple years, we wanted to share some of these shots with our fans.  We hope this section can be a showcase for both the Jeeps and the Jeep Wave Decal going forward.  If you want to see your Jeep here, just send us a shot with a visible Jeep Wave Decal or Shirt and we’ll get it up for you!

Fiji Jeepin'

In Fiji for the next couple weeks…so somebody else is gonna have to Jeep Wave in Colorado while we’re gone.  In between relaxing and taking in the sights, came across this little Jeep parked in the lot near the marina.  It needs a Jeep Wave sticker, but otherwise, very cool!  Lots of Hilux’s and old model Land Cruisers with intake snorkels here.  We can imagine that when the Typhoon season comes around, there’s a lot of water fording to do.

Anybody know of a Jeep club in Fiji?  How bout the general South Pacific?  More pics to come!