Learjet 23 N294BC
In the late 1950s Bill
Lear Sr became interested in (enamored of?) the Swiss FFA P-16 jet
fighter. He saw, in
this basic design, the basis for a twin jet executive aircraft.
In the event
Swiss Government elected not to go ahead with the P-16 program.
Lear, in the meantime,
formed the Swiss American Aviation Corporation (SAAC) to design and
build his Learjet.
For various logistic and political reasons the whole
enterprise was upped and moved to Wichita,
Kansas in 1962 and renamed
the Lear Jet Corporation. A stylish aircraft reflecting its
origins, the first Learjet flew on 7 October
1963. Initial aircraft seated 5 passengers. This
example was owned by the Boise Cascade Corporation and flew into
Palm Springs, California
one Spring day in 1964,
presumbly on an executive golf junket.