VH-ANI. Douglas DC-3-396. c/n 4119.
Originally ordered new by American Airlines Inc as a Douglas DC-3-277D
Aircraft configured to seat 21 passengers with starboard passenger door
Sale price quoted by Douglas was $US 138,512
Order was transferred to the United States Army Air Force
Construction completed at Long Beach, California - July 1941
Built as a Douglas DC-3-396, Type C-50-DO with a starboard cargo door
Delivered to the USAAF - July 24, 1941
Allocated U.S. serial number 41-7697
Arrived Maxwell Air Force Base - August 11, 1941
Transferred to Bolling Air Force Base - January 15, 1942
Transferred to Tulsa Air Force Base - March 23, 1942
Transferred to Knellwood Air Force Base - April 16, 1942
Transferred to Bolling Air Force Base - August 15, 1942
Transferred to Hamilton Air Force Base - August 30, 1942
Issued to the 5th Air Force - October 20, 1942
Issued to 21st TCS, 374th TCG, Amberley, Queensland - November 1942
Operated using the radio call-sign 'VHCDK'
Aircraft was originally named 'Laka Nookie'
Allocated to No 36 Squadron, R.A.A.F. - January 19, 1943
Aircraft was now named 'Kwitchyr Bichin'
Delivered by sea to C.A.C. Fishermen's Bend plant for modification and fumigation - March 15, 1943
Returned to the U.S.A.A.F. - April 14, 1943
Delivered to No 31 Squadron, A.D.A.T., Parafield, South Australia - April 29, 1944
Assigned to Guinea Airways, Parafield, S.A. - May 1, 1944
Handed over to Guinea Airways Ltd at Parafield - May 3, 1944
Operated by Guinea Airways under contract to the Allied Directorate of Air Transport
Operated in camouflage livery with large U.S. star / stripe at rear door area and 'Guinea Airways' under cockpit
Based in Townsville and operated for ADAT
Officially transferred to Guinea Airways by the U.S.A.A.F. - October 7, 1945
Aircraft had flown 4,991 hours
Sold to Australian National Airways - May 16, 1946
Entered onto the Australian Aircraft Register as VH-ANI - May 22, 1946
Registered to Guinea Airways Ltd (CofR 977)
Leased to Guinea Airways as registered operator - May 30, 1946
Registered to Australian National Airways Pty Ltd - July 18, 1946
Operated as a freighter with starboard cargo door
Believed to have been used by Butler Air Transport for short periods but details are unknown
Participated in 'Operation Haylift' during the South West Queensland floods - 1950
Converted to Pratt and Whitney R-1830-S1C3G engines prior to its sale
Sold to New Zealand National Airways Corporation (NZNAC) - June 13, 1955
Arrived Auckland at conclusion of delivery flight - June 14, 1955
Cancelled from the Australian Aircraft Register - June 14, 1955
Entered onto the New Zealand Aircraft Register as ZK-BKE - July 19, 1955
Registered to New Zealand National Airways Corporation (NZNAC)
Aircraft was named 'Kawatere' (parakeet)
Used as a freighter by NZNAC
Withdrawn from NZNAC service - January 18, 1966
Aircraft had flown 38,466 hours
Sold to Australian Aircraft Sales, Sydney - September 13, 1967
Sold to Royal Air Lao - December 1967
Departed Mangere, Auckland on delivery flight to Laos via Brisbane - January 1968
Entered onto the Laotian Aircraft Register as XW-TDD - January 1968
Leased to Lanexang Airlines, Laos - March 11, 1968
Reregistered as XW-TFI - ?
Leased to Khemara Air Transport - ?
Crashed on take-off from Takeo, Cambodia - December 15, 1974
Aircraft was destroyed without loss of life
VH-ANI. Australian National Airways - in the full livery at Essendon Airport, date unknown.
ZK-BKE. NZNAC - in the full livery, location and date unknown.