The Commemorative Air Force’s (CAF) famous Boeing B-29 Superfortress bomber FIFI – the only remaining flying example of the aircraft in the world – will be the feature World War II airplane in their summer tour that includes more than 20 stops starting May 15 in Birmingham, Ala. The CAF AirPower History Tour continues through October and will feature a different combination of historic World War II aircraft at each of its stops across the Eastern and Midwest U.S.
Other historic military aircraft joining FIFI at different tour stops will include the Consolidated B-24 Liberator “Diamond Lil,” the famous combat veteran North American P-51 Mustang “The Brat III” and other WWII fighters and trainers.
The B-29 Superfortress, first flown in 1942, began active service in 1944 and is perhaps best known as the aircraft whose missions over Japan helped bring about the end of World War II. It was designed as a replacement for the older Boeing B-17 Flying Fortresses and B-24s, with longer range and greater bomb loads. The B-29 also was used in the Korean War in the early 1950s and was a staple of the U.S. Air Force until the late 1950s.
The tour is excited to announce the addition of another significant historic airplane. Pilot Sarah Wilson and her Jimmie Allen Flying Club Speedmail will be traveling with the tour for many of the stops. This 1929 airplane is the oldest surviving Stearman Model 4 Speedmail and is a real-life celebrity vehicle. Originally delivered to the Richfield Oil Co. on Oct. 28, 1929, this plane was the flagship for the Jimmie Allen Flying Club based on the popular radio program The Air Adventures of Jimmie Allen. The radio series and flying club were important tools and greatly influenced the generation that would fly in WWII.
Events are open to the public and will allow attendees to get up close to these famous aircraft. Cockpit tours of the B-29 and others will be available when the aircraft are not in motion. There will be opportunities for attendees to purchase a ride in many of the airplanes at all of the stops. Ride reservations are recommended.
Tour stops confirmed are:
Birmingham, Ala., May 16-19, Birmingham International Airport
Atlanta, Ga., May 20-22, DeKalb-Peachtree Airport
Charlotte, N.C., May 23-27, Concord Regional Airport
Manassas, Va., May 29-June 2, Manassas Regional Airport
Baltimore, Md., June 3-5, Martin State Airport
Reading, Pa., June 7-9, WW II Weekend, Atlantic Air Museum
Hamilton, Ont., Canada, June 15-16, B-24 only at Hamilton Air Show
Pittsburg, Pa., June 12-16, Allegheny County Airport
Akron, Ohio, June 17-19, Akron Airport
Dayton (Ohio) Air Show, June 21-23, Dayton International Airport
Cincinnati, Ohio, June 26-30, Cincinnati Lunken Airport
Nashville, Tenn., July 3-7, Smyrna Airport
Marion, Ill., July 20-21, Marion Airport
Madison, Wis., July 26-28, Dane County Regional Airport
Oshkosh, Wis., July 29-Aug. 4, Whitman Regional Airport
Denver, Colo., Aug. 15-18, Denver Airport (Broomfield, Colo.)
Kansas City, Kans., Sept. 13-16, B-24 only at New Century AirCenter
Fayetteville, Ark., Sept. 20-22, Arkansas Military Air Museum
Dallas (Texas) Air Expo, Oct. 3-6, Collin County Airport, McKinney, Texas
CAF AirSho, Oct. 11-13, Midland (Texas) International Airport