Mite of the Month, January, 2005

John Davidson of Crestwood, Kentucky purchased N4096 (serial number 273) from Winslow Jones in March, 2004. The following report is taken from e-mails that John sent us recently. Except as noted, all photos are by Michael O'Leary of Air Classics magazine.

These two photos were taken by me at the private strip where I keep the Mite, northeast of Louisville.

That's the Ohio River near my brother's airport. Lee Bottom Airport is 20 or 25 miles upstream from Louisville, KY but located on the Indiana side of the river. My Mite lives on the Kentucky side, closer to me. You are seeing KY on this side and IN on the other side of the river.

I just decided to throw this one in for fun. This was taken a few years ago by the same person that shot the above photos of the Mite. I flew it for the owner at air shows around the country. (Tough job but someone's got to do it!).

I keep N4096 about 25 miles northeast of Louisville, KY and it is the only Mite in the state of Kentucky. In fact, in the rather short time I have owned the Mite it has become something of a fixture around the area, showing up at most of the fly-ins within a reasonable distance.

You see, we have a rather large antique and classic aircraft fly-in at my brother's airstrip that is located beside the Ohio River about 20 miles upstream from Louisville. It is the Lee Bottom Airport (36I) and sits on the Indiana side of the river ( The annual event, on the last Saturday in September, has grown into one of the larger fly-ins in this part of the country. We had over 200 airplanes in attendance this year at the 3,000 foot grass strip.

This year we had two rather large magazines present to cover the event. Aeroplane magazine came from London England, as well as Air Classics, which is a U.S. publication. Air Classics did an air-to-air photo shoot of my Mite and ended up with several good photos.

Fortunately, I knew the photographer/publisher of the magazine, having flown for him before in a P-47 Thunderbolt I used to fly. He was nice enough to send me some of the original photos he shot that day and gave me permission to use them in any way I wanted. I had in fact specifically asked him about use on the Mooney Mite web site so I am sending copies to you in case you want to include them with my name on the owners page.

These were professionally shot on slide film and I have the originals of the ones I am sending you. One of these photos will likely be in the next issue of Air Classics that should be showing up on the news stands any day now.

To me, the Mite is one of the purest examples of flying pleasure. I often describe it as an almost guilty pleasure and it is one of the sweetest flying airplanes I have ever flown......and I have flown a rather large range of antique/classic/warbird aircraft. For me the Mite is the world's perfect second airplane.

It's kind of funny.... I've flown one of the largest production single-engined piston airplanes in the world (P-47) and one of the smallest production single-engined airplanes (Mite). And they are two of my favorite airplanes ever flown. They are quite a study in contrasts. Fuel in the Thunderbolt's aux tank weighs more than the Mite!

N4096 was also featured as Mite of the Month in November, 2001.

John flies for UPS as a first officer on Boeing 767/757s. In addition to N4096, he is the owner of  Champ 7-DC N2665E and Stinson L-5 N9838F (project).