Last week EAA staff had the opportunity to visit and tour the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force in Dayton, Ohio. Boasting a collection of more than 300 aircraft with accompanying artifacts, the museum is divided by era: World War I, World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Cold War, Modern, Space, R&D, Presidential, and Global Reach. The unique layout of the museum provides visitors with the experience of walking through the entire history of the U.S. Air Force starting from WWI to the present day. Among the galleries are combat veteran aircraft, former presidential aircraft, X-planes, and many sole surviving aircraft types.
The focus of the trip was to attend the opening of the B-17F Memphis Belle exhibit, which honored the first heavy bomber aircraft and crew to complete 25 missions during WWII. The aircraft had previously been on display in Memphis, Tennessee, for many years. It was acquired by the NMUSAF in 2005 and had been in restoration until earlier this year. The opening coincided with the 75th anniversary of the crew and airplane’s 25th mission.
Photos by Connor Madison