PEACHTREE CITY, GA. (March 1, 2022) – In cities across the U.S., vintage military aircraft rest quietly in museums, where school children and tourists admire them, take their pictures and leave them behind closed doors at the end of each day. This May, aviation history blasts out of the museums and into the skies as the Commemorative Air Force thunders into Georgia, led by the B-17 Flying Fortress Texas Raiders. Local airports will host American aviation history as the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) presents an array of events featuring restored WWII aircraft for public viewing and rides at cities along the Georgia WWII Heritage Trail. CAF Airbase Georgia, based in Peachtree City, Ga., is part of the Georgia WWII Heritage Trail.
The CAF will present a series of events focused on American aviation history in Georgia in May, culminating with the celebration of the Flags for the Fallen on Memorial Day weekend in Savannah, Ga. Americans of all ages will delight in the opportunity to put their hands on history by getting up close and even flying in the historic aircraft, all of which are notable for their level of restoration and historic significance.
A variety of warbirds will visit Columbus on May 4-9, Macon on May 20-22, Savannah on May 26-30 and Douglas on May 31-June 2. All four cities are home to museums on the Georgia WWII Heritage Trail, including Columbus’ National Infantry Museum, the Museum of Aviation at Warner-Robins Airbase near Macon, the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth near Savannah and World War II Flight Training Museum in Douglas.
The initial event in Columbus, Ga., will feature the B-29 Superfortress, FIFI, and B-24 Liberator Diamond Lil, one of the first B-24s produced, and one of only two in the world still flying. The Boeing B-29 Superfortress FIFI is one of only two flying in the world today, and was the largest and most technically advanced aircraft of its time. FIFI and Diamond Lil also will appear in Brunswick May18-22 and Augusta on May 25-28.
Featured aircraft at the other locations include the iconic CAF B-17 Flying Fortress Texas Raiders, one of only three remaining that are actively flying today. This aircraft was the first Flying Fortress to be restored solely for the sake of education and as a flying museum, and is accurately restored to WWII configuration, bristling with machine guns and featuring period-specific equipment. Accompanying the big bomber will be the world’s only flying example of the notorious SB2C dive bomber Helldiver, as well as the popular SNJ / T6 Texan advanced trainer in which thousands of airmen learned to fly for combat.
“Local CAF Airbase Georgia plans to add to the excitement of the event in Macon by sending our popular P-51 Mustang Red Nose,” said Airbase Leader Joel Perkins. “Rides will be available on Texas Raiders and other historic aircraft, providing once-in-a-lifetime flying experiences on restored CAF aircraft.”
About the CAF Airbase Georgia Warbird Museum
CAF Airbase Georgia, based in Peachtree City, Ga., was founded in 1987. The Airbase is one of the largest unit locations of the Commemorative Air Force (CAF). The group maintains and flies seven vintage military aircraft including a P-51 Mustang, an FG-1D Corsair, an SBD Dauntless, and a P-63A Kingcobra. The Airbase, which is composed of more than 400 volunteers, is a founding partner of the Georgia WWII Heritage Trail launched in 2021. The Airbase is part of the CAF, a non-profit, tax-exempt organization that relies on contributions of time and funds to carry out its mission. For more information, go to https://airbasegeorgia.org.
About the CAF
The Commemorative Air Force is the world’s largest flying museum, with a fleet of more than 170 WWII airplanes assigned to unit locations across the United States. Nearly all of the aircraft are kept in flying condition, enabling people to experience firsthand the sights and sounds of vintage military aircraft in flight. Supported by 12,000 volunteer members, the CAF is dedicated to honoring American military aviation through flight, exhibition, education and remembrance.
Contact: Steve Forsyth
Public Information Officer, CAF Airbase Georgia