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Bombers over Baltimore?

| August 26, 2014, 10:40 AM | 0 Comments

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It’s not very often you get the opportunity to go up in a WWII B-17 Bomber. So when The Liberty Foundation offered Eye on Annapolis the chance we took it!

The Boeing B-17 “Flying Fortress” is one of only 13 Bomber planes, that is still able to fly today. This B-17 was built towards the end of the war in late 1945 and ended up never seeing combat. These brand-new planes sat in warehouses collecting dust. Eventually, most started to be sold off  for use in other jobs.

In 1950 this plane in particular was sent as a transport in the Korean War and then would have a second life for 33 years in the United States forestry services putting out forest fires.

In 1989 this B-17 Bomber was asked to serve as the main character in the infamous WWII movie “The Memphis Belle.”  Painted to look just as the original Memphis Belle would have during the war, the B-17 set across the Atlantic and began filming. The Famous Memphis Belle was known for its crew that would be the first to complete their 25 missions and then be able to go home. They returned to much publicity and fanfare for being the first successful group home to the US with all missions completed.  Since returning to the US after filming in England this B-17 Bomber plane has continued in the paint scheme of “The Memphis Belle” and is now owned and operated by David Talichet and The Liberty Foundation.

The Liberty Foundation maintains the history and integrity of these planes and are doing an amazing job at it. Flown by Volunteer Captains Bob Hill and John Shuttleworth for our flight, we were extremely delighted with our experience and cannot say enough about our ride and the passion the crew held for the B-17. Strapped in only for taking off and landing you are able to get up and walk around to each combat station looking out the open air windows with the guns still attached. This is the closest you can get to really experience the sensations that combat soldiers in the “greatest generation” would have seen. We were even able to climb down into the nose of the plane, which is made of all glass and offers an amazing view to even the most frequent flyer. This is where many of our young fathers and grandfathers saw their views of France, Germany, The Baltic’s etc.

The B-17 flight experience takes 45 minutes with approximately 30 minutes of air time. Guests that do not wish to go up are welcome take a tour of the B-17 Bomber Plane for a much appreciated non-mandatory donation. There will also be a designated area for those that would like to watch take off and landing of the plane for no charge. Tickets for the flight are $410 for Liberty Foundation members and $450 for non-members. While the cost of the flight may sound expensive all of the ticket money is used to keep this plane up in the air. All the people you meet are volunteer pilot captains and maintenance technicians who do this out of a labor of love and a hope to keep the history of these birds alive. A “Flying Fortress” B-17 Bomber plane costs over $4500 per inflight hour to maintain. And it costs the Liberty Foundation over $1,500,000 dollars to keep this one plane airworthy and out on tour.

If you or a family member are History buffs, plane junkies, Military Veterans or are just wanting to get in touch with what your fathers or grandfathers might have seen and experienced we can absolutely tell you this is a once in a lifetime experience that cannot be missed. The Plane will be at Martin’s Airport in Middle River, Maryland all week but will be giving flights and tours Labor Day weekend August 30-31.

To get a glimpse or take a ride, visit the Foundation’s website at or call their number at 918-340-0243.

As for our experience….just wow!

©2014 Kevin Carroll, A Digital Cure Photography for Eye On Annapolis

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