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Rearwin 2000C "Ken-Royce"

Jean LaRene's Rearwin

In the late 1920's, the Rearwin aircraft company was founded and started to produce light aircraft for the civil market. Their first production aircraft was the model 2000C, named the Ken-Royce after Mr. Rearwin's two sons. This was a three-place biplane, first powered by a six-cylinder Curtiss Challenger radial engine of 185 horsepower. Only five of these aircraft were built. The design was granted Approved Type Certificate #232 on 9/18/1929, just in time for the start of the Great Depression.


Jean LaRene

Jean LaRene

Jean LaRene was one of the pioneer women aviators. She earned her pilot's certificate in the late 1920's and bought one of the Rearwin 2000C biplanes, S/N 103, registered as NC592H. She was a charter member of the 99's (the women's pilot organization, still in existence). Although Jean flew in the Women's Air Derbies of 1930, '31, and '32, she didn't win, and was forced out by mechanical troubles in two of the Derbies. She also raced in the National Air Races of 1931, placing fourth in event #26 (a 30-mile race). These races were flown in her Ken-Royce, with the front cockpit covered to reduce drag. In the seasons between races, she used the Rearwin to hop passengers.

In 1934, she made several attempts to set a new in-flight-refueled endurance record (in a borrowed cabin monoplane, not the Rearwin). These attempts unfortunately failed, as she and her co-pilot were forced to land by weather or mechanical problems several times, before a new record could be set.


NC592H

Rearwin fuselage

Jean married Lou Foote, who ran a flying service in Dallas. Eventually, the Rearwin was put away as newer, less expensive aircraft came on the market. She never sold it. Roger Freeman bought the remains of the Rearwin from the estate of Lou Foote, and transferred ownership to PFM. It is now being restored to flying condition by Don Dickson of New Berlin, Texas, and will eventually join the PFM fleet in the Pioneer Air Museum.

NC592H, s/n 103, was built in 1929 as the third Rearwin 2000C, and is the only one known to exist today. PFM also has the appropriate Curtiss Challenger engine for it, so a completely authentic restoration will be possible.

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More Information

More information is available about the Ken-Royce on the Rearwin Airplanes web page.