Budd Pioneer Renovation 1969
The Pioneer was removed for maintenance in May of 1969. Because the aircraft’s frame is made from stainless steel, the Pioneer endured decades of weather changes, including snow, sleet, and rain, but eventually maintenance was required. In 1969, the Budd Company was still in business, and offered to arrange for the plane’s restoration. They moved the plane to their factory, where restoration work was supervised by John C. Whitesell—the same Budd employee who had overseen its original construction. Whitesell made the journey north from his retirement home in Florida to help the Budd team restore the Pioneer to its original glory.