via email from George Nolta, 5-15-04
     Mostly by curious accident, I just met an 88 year-old WWII veteran who flew with Floyd. His name is Ralph Swindle, and he lives with his wife in a senior citizen home in Chico. In 1942, Ralph was a training supervisor in an Army Air Corp group at Mather AFB in Sacramento, and Floyd was assigned to Ralph’s group to learn how to fly twin-engine bombers that were being used to train bomber navigators. Floyd and Ralph became very good friends, but were only together a few months. Floyd got a call from an old friend in Hollywood to come to Hollywood to make Army Air Corp flying training films, which he accepted. That was the last time that Ralph and Floyd worked together, although Ralph and his wife Jewel visited Floyd and Jesse at their home in North Holywood.
     It appears that this is the way in which Floyd got into that training film squadron. What is interesting is that Floyd flew in the 1941 Warner Bros film called "The Bride Came C.O.D.", with James Cagney and Bette Davis. So this implies that Floyd was flying in Hollywood movies both before and after he was in the military film squadron. This is news to me! It’s amazing how all these little pieces slowly come together over time!
     Ralph went on to have a fantastic career flying B-24 bombers in the South Pacific. He has a great collection of wartime photographs, including one of explosions over Corregidor. He was a bomber squadron commander when they were planning to start the final invasion of Japan. He was greatly relieved when he learned that President Truman authorized the atomic bomb attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, which soon ended the war. About 2 or 3 days after the bomb on Nagasaki, Ralph flew over Nagasaki on a reconnaissance flight to assess the damage. Following the war, he flew 30 years as a Pan Am pilot.

       The large top image is Floyd Nolta, standing in front of his Bellanca Senior Skyrocket. He was flying for Warner Bros, and they were making this movie in 1941, called: "The Bride Came C.O.D." The two smaller pictures underneath show James Cagney and Bette Davis - the stars of the movie. Notice how they staged the plane to appear to be the result of a crash in the desert. You'll see this plane again on the dust cover of the VHS video of the movie.
Photo from collection of Floyd Nolta
Caption courtesy of George Nolta

       Here's the cover of the dust jacket of the VHS video of the movie "The Bride Came C.O.D." Floyd Nolta flew in the movie.
Photo from collection of Floyd Nolta
Caption courtesy of George Nolta

     Floyd Nolta, Willows flier, is in Hollywood with his big Bellanca plane which is being used in the latest James Cagney picture.
     Frank Fuller, the famous San Francisco speed pilot, paid approximately $25,000 for the ship when it was new, and Nolta got it last year. It's the only plane of that type available on the coast, and was just what movie directors wanted. Local movie fans are wondering whether Nolta will appear in the film.
Clipping from Willows Journal

tomorrow night........Bette Davis may be a glamour girl, but FLOYD NOLTA, who's right down there among the stars these days, prefers good old fat Eugene Pallette---Willows will soon break into a No. 1 picture when FLOYD AND HIS BELLANCA show up in "The Bride Came C. O. D."---let's get it here soon, Doc........cheerio.---M. E. G.
Collection of George Nolta

Nolta Did Flying In "Thunder In East" - 1952
     "Thunder in the East," which plays tonight and tomorrow at the Tower Theatre, has one star in its cast whose name is not listed on the posters.
     He is Floyd Nolta of Willows, who did all the flying in the picture when it was filmed about one and one -half years ago in the High Sierra around Lone Pine and Mt. Whitney. The picture stars Alan Ladd, with whom Nolta served in the Air Force; Deborah Kerr, Corinne Calvet and Charles Boyer. Nolta flew a Hudson bomber and a navy dive bomber.
     I visited Gregg Nolta yesterday up at the old Nolta's Airport north of Willows. We went through some old souvenir suitcases and found some items that I thought would be of interest to family history freaks like me, so I borrowed them. I'll scan them and send them on to people who might be interested. This one is about Floyd's flying in a movie that neither Gregg nor I had ever heard of, "Thunder In the East". Don't know the date of this publication, nor the newspaper it came from.
Collection of George Nolta

30 Seconds over Tokyo
Floyd flew in the
1944 Warner Bros. movie
30 Seconds Over Tokyo,
which starred
Van Johnson, Spencer Tracy,
and Robert Mitchum
Floyd flew Jimmie Doolittle's plane as it flew under the Golden Gate Bridge.
Courtesy of George Nolta

God is my Copilot
Floyd flew in the 1945 MGM movie
"God is My Co-Pilot"
Dennis Morgan, Dane Clark, and Raymond Massey.
Courtesy of George Nolta

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