Donovan Reese Berlin was a mechanical engineer who became one of America’s leading military aircraft designers at the Curtiss-Wright Corporation. Berlin led the development program that produced the P-36 Hawk, its successors, and ultimately, the P-40 Warhawk. In 1958, at Vertol Aircraft Corporation, Berlin’s design won a U.S. Army competition for what would become the Boeing CH-47 Chinook, the Army’s standard medium assault transport helicopter.
Curtiss P-40 Warhawk
The P-40 Warhawk was the first American-built fighter aircraft to see combat in WWII, though it was with the Royal Air Force in the North African campaign. Operated by more Allied air forces than any other fighter aircraft, and bested by more capable fighters like the P-51 Mustang and Spitfire, the type became a formidable ground attack aircraft. The gaping maw of its Allison engine’s air intake, wrapped in the famous shark mouth motif has become symbolic of Allied resolve and tenacity.