The B-25 Mitchell Bomber Plane “Maid in the Shade” on exhibit at the Northwest Wyoming Regional Airport.
Pilot Mike Doyle recalled the history of the B-25 Mitchell Bomber plane as he helped tourists into the historic plane.
This plane was in actual combat and served 15 missions in North Africa and Italy, Doyle explained.
Signatures of veterans cover the bombardier doors, one of the reasons the volunteers of the Flying Legends of Victory Tour are passionate about sharing these aircraft with the public. Sometimes, he said, there is a lot of emotion for both the pilot and the guests paying to fly.
“I have met two World War II veterans that have flown these planes before,” another pilot Ben York said. “One of them went down on his first mission. The other served many missions. I took both of them up in the sky, and watched as tears started to run down their face.”
York himself got choked up remembering those moments.
The featured B-17G Bomber plane is one of four aircrafts that are still able to be flown. Although it was not used in combat, it was used to map out the Philippine Islands before being used for air-sea rescue and to fight wildfires, before being fully restored. This is one of two planes that are on display this week at the Northwest Wyoming Regional Airport (formerly Gillette Campbell County Airport.) Visitors can tour the aircrafts or pay to take a flight in one of these historic planes.
“The B-17G Bomber is extremely rugged and the crew members in WWII were exposed to the harsh environmental elements as the temperatures could reach -40degrees F with no insolation as it flew at 30,000 feet.” York explained.
The Flying Legends of Victory Tour is excited to share these historic aircraft with Campbell County, York added.
Ground tours of both bombers will be held Monday, Wednesday and Friday – Sunday from 2 – 6 p.m and Tuesday and Thursday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tickets are $15 per person or $25 for a family of four.
Participants can also purchase tickets to fly in both planes. For flight times and prices, please visit Flying Legends Facebook page.