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SanDiegoAirAndSpaceMuseum

 World’s Most Prestigious Air & Space Hall of Fame to Enshrine Distinguished Class of 2018

Peggy Whitson, Ellen Ochoa, Brad Tilden, Bruce Whitman, Lloyd “Fig” Newton, Richard I. Bong. Corporate Angel Network / Air Charity Network and other aviation and space legends to be honored at San Diego Air & Space Museum’s annual star-studded celebration.

San Diego, CA - May 07, 2018 – Peggy Whitson, the first female commander of the International Space Station (ISS) and holder of the record for most days in space by a NASA astronaut; Ellen Ochoa, the first Hispanic woman in the world to go into space; Brad Tilden, Chairman/CEO of Alaska Air Group, parent company of Alaska Airlines;Bruce Whitman, Chairman, President and CEO of FlightSafety International;Lloyd “Fig” Newton, the first African American pilot in the United States Air Force Thunderbirds; Richard I. Bong, America’s Ace of Aces and recipient of the Medal of Honor, America’s highest military award; and the Corporate Angel Network / Air Charity Network, national charitable organizations whose missions are to transport those in serious need;to be enshrined at this year’s International Air & Space Hall of Fame Celebration.

Join the San Diego Air & Space Museum in celebrating the honorees on Wednesday, October 3, 2018, in the Edwin D. McKellar Pavilion of Flight. Guests from around the world are assembling for a spectacular evening of fun and extraordinary recognition, as each guest is treated to an experiential peek into the lives of these air and space legends. Since 1963, the International Air & Space Hall of Fame has honored more than 200 of the world’s most significant pilots, crew members, visionaries, inventors, aerospace engineers, business leaders, preservationists, designers and space explorers.

“We’re especially pleased to honor this exemplary Class of 2018 because these men and women are amongst the most talented figures in air and space history,” said Jim Kidrick, President & CEO of the San Diego Air & Space Museum. “Aviation and space exploration, as embodied by the honorees in the International Air & Space Hall of Fame, directly represents the human pioneering and exploring spirit. October 3 is THE day of the year every guest will remember for the rest of their lives. Guests come from all over the globe just to be in the room with our Honorees and join in this celebration.”

The International Air & Space Hall of Fame is the most prestigious induction of its kind in the world and is composed of hundreds of air and space pioneers, engineers, inventors and innovators, along with adventurers, scientists and industry leaders. NASA Mercury, Geminiand Apolloastronauts and Russian cosmonauts are honored in the Hall, as well as famous legends such as the Wright Brothers, Charles Lindbergh, Neil Armstrong and Amelia Earhart. Notable inductees include Buzz Aldrin, Chuck Yeager, Igor Sikorsky, Wernher von Braun, Jack Northrop, Jackie Cochran, William Boeing, Sr., Reuben H. Fleet, Glenn Curtiss, Walter Zable Sr., Fran Bera, Wally Schirra, Bill Anders, Jim Lovell, T. Claude Ryan, Jimmy Doolittle, Bob Hoover, Linden Blue, Patty Wagstaff, and many more. See the following link: http://sandiegoairandspace.org/exhibits/online-exhibit-page/international-air-space-hall-of-fame.

Proceeds from the International Air & Space Hall of Fame celebration benefit the Museum’s youth education programs.

“Inspiring kids to undertake tough science and engineering challenges is a critical first step for our future,” Kidrick said. “We must also give them the resources and impetus they need to pursue science education degrees.”

The International Air & Space Hall of Fame Class of 2018:

Peggy Whitson Whitson is an astronaut who holds the record for most days spent in space of any NASA astronaut –with a total of 665 days. Whitson was the first female commander of the International Space Station (ISS) with Expedition 16, and in 2017 became the first female astronaut to command the ISS twice.

Ellen Ochoa Ochoa became the first Hispanic woman in the world to go to space in 1993, serving on a nine-day mission aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery. A veteran of four space flights, Ochoa logged nearly 1,000 hours in space. Currently she serves as the Director of Johnson Space Center. She is the JSC’s first Hispanic director, its second female and 11thoverall director.

Brad Tilden Tilden’s passion for Alaska Airlines has redefined travel fare expectations for airline customers – and ensured the highest quality air travel experience. A 25-year veteran of Alaska Airlines, he now serves as Chairman/CEO of Alaska Air Group, parent company of Alaska Airlines, Horizon Air and the recently acquired Virgin America. He’s leading the transition to replace Virgin’s Airbus fleet with Boeing jets.

Bruce N. Whitman Whitman joined FlightSafety International in 1961 and since 2003 serves as Chairman, President & CEO. He is Director Emeritus of the Civil Air Patrol and the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. He also serves on several boards, including Orbis International and Corporate Angel Network.

General Lloyd W. “Fig” Newton - USAF Newton was the first African-American pilot in the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds. A retired United States Air Force four-star general, he served as Commander, Air Education and Training Command from 1997-2000. Newton was a superb command pilot with more than 4,000 flying hours, including in the F-117 stealth fighter. Currently, Newton is Chair of the National Business Aviation Association.

Major Richard I. Bong - USAAF America’s all-time Ace of Aces, Bong downed 40 enemy planes in the Pacific theater of WWII while flying the P-38 Lightning fighter. His many decorations for outstanding skills and extraordinary courage included America’s highest award –the Medal of Honor. He died on August 6, 1945 at the young age of 24 while testing one of our first fighter jets (P80). Thousands attended his funeral, and many more lined the route to the Wisconsin cemetery where he was buried.

Corporate Angel Network / Air Charity Network National charitable organizations whose missions are to transport those in serious need. Corporate Angel Network’s sole mission is to transport cancer patients to hospitals, at no cost, in order to receive a specialized form of treatment. Air Charity Network provides free air transportation to specialized health care facilities or distant destinations due to family, community or national crisis.

More than 600 regional, national and international business, air and space leaders are anticipated to attend the 2018 International Air & Space Hall of Fame Gala, including prominent representatives and Hall of Fame members from prior years.

The San Diego Air & Space Museum is California’s official air and space museum and education center. The Museum is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution and it was the first aero-themed Museum to be accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. Now showing: SPEED: Science in Motion, a fun interactive special exhibition for adventurers of all ages. The Museum is located at 2001 Pan American Plaza, Balboa Park, San Diego, CA 92101. The Museum and gift store are open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. with admissions until 4:30 p.m. Closed Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.


Copyright © 2018 San Diego Air & Space Museum, All rights reserved. Press Contact Contact: David Neville
San Diego Air & Space Museum
(619) 234-8291, Ext. 140
dneville@sdasm.org

Our mailing address is:
San Diego Air & Space Museum
2001 Pan American Plz
San Diego, CA 92101

web PlacidLassie

C-47 Placid Lassie to Appear at the DeKalb Peachtree Airport

Oxford, Conn. – May 7, 2018 – The Tunison Foundation, a non-profit organization that owns and operates World War II-era aircraft, is bringing their D-Day veteran – the C-47 Placid Lassie of the D-Day Squadron – to the upcoming DeKalb Peachtree Airport Good Neighbor Day Open House and Airshow, Saturday, May 19 from noon to 5 p.m. The FREE family friendly event will feature numerous aerobatic performances, aircraft on static display and an array of exhibitors and vendors.

Visitors will get to see C-47 Placid Lassie on static display for up close viewing and cockpit tours. The crew will be with the aircraft onsite to answer questions, give tours inside and share more about preparations for their upcoming trans-Atlantic journey to Normandy, France for Daks Over Normandy. Next year, Placid Lassiewill fly in formation with other American D-Day aircraft across the ocean to join up with a larger Allied fleet for an epic flyover of the beaches of Normandy to mark the 75th anniversary of D-Day on June 6, 2019, complete with paratroopers in World War II gear and parachutes.

“I’m proud to call Atlanta my home and I’m thrilled to help bring Placid Lassie to the Good Neighbor Day event,” said D-Day Squadron Executive Director Moreno Aguiari. “I think our community will really appreciate this flying piece of history. We invite you to come down and take a look inside our vintage, fully-restored aircraft that brought citizen soldiers into the perils of battle on D-Day, and helped bring an end to World War II.”

The DeKalb Peachtree Airport is located at 2000 Airport Rd. in Atlanta. The event is FREE, with parking available for only $10 at 2036 Dresden Dr. via Claremont Rd. Come straight to the airport’s main entrance on MARTA bus 19 from Decatur or Chamblee stations. Learn more at pdkairshow.com.

About the D-Day Squadron

The D-Day Squadron is the part of the Tunison Foundation, a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization. In June 2019, the D-Day Squadron will lead an American fleet of historic, restored C-47 World War II military aircraft in Daks Over Normandy, a flyover of more than 30 international aircraft to drop 250 paratroopers over the original 1944 drop zones in Normandy commemorating the 75th anniversary of D-Day. The event will honor the citizen soldiers of the War, whose bravery led the Allies to the liberation of France, and then to an end of the devastating War in Europe. The Squadron’s education program takes the compelling story of the citizen soldier to audiences at airshows and events off the flight line to honor these brave Americans and ensure their memory and significance is appreciated for generations to come. The group’s efforts are funded through the generous tax-deductible contribution of their supporters. Learn more at DDaySquadron.org.

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Press Contact

Moreno Aguiari

Executive Director, D-Day Squadron

director@ddaysquadron.org

(404) 202-9348

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A-26 Lady Liberty Is Back in the Air

By Ken Larcher

(April 16, 2018, Enid, OK) - After 17 months of repairs, four fuel tank replacements, two AD Notes, airframe repairs and 15,000 hours of maintenance work, the A-26 Lady Liberty is again airworthy. She flew a test flight on April 15, 2018, which was successful and the aircraft operated great.

The issues began last year when the aircraft went in for a scheduled inspection which required removing both oil tanks and all four fuel bladders. When those items were removed mechanics discovered that some corrosion had caused some damage to the fuel bay. The Sponsor Group, a group of volunteers who maintain and fly the aircraft, needed to repair the airframe structure and replace all four damaged fuel bladders with a new set.

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The A-26 Invader is an attack bomber that is known for being one of the few aircraft types to perform in all three wars, World War II, Korean War and Vietnam. A-26s like Lady Liberty flew a variety of missions, strafing ground targets at night and even dropping secret agents into Berlin as part of the Carpetbaggers. Lady Liberty is the world's oldest flying A-26 Invader. By working with new A&P mechanics, the Lady Liberty Sponsor Group has been able to increase awareness of the airplane in the community, allowing it to attend more events.

This recent project was extensive and would not have been completed as quickly without the efforts of Gary Trice, Gary Stein, Charlie Howard, Ivan Koehn, and Jason Hill. In addition, Dick Seabrook has been integral in supporting the aircraft and the entire Lady Liberty team of volunteers.

Now that Lady Liberty is back flying she can continue flying to airshows and aviation events, with volunteers who can tell the amazing story of this A-26 to the public.

 

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Veterans Enjoy Hero Status at WWII Heritage Days

PEACHTREE CITY, GA. (April 30, 2018) –   A record crowd helped welcome about 60 World War II veterans to the 15th Annual World War II Heritage Days at the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) Dixie Wing Warbird Museum in Peachtree City, Ga. Rare vintage aircraft, including the restored B-17 Flying Fortress, “Texas Raiders,” completed the WWII atmosphere for the veterans, especially for five who actually flew on the historic aircraft. Two were B-17 crewmembers who had not been on the bombers in more than 70 years.

“It was truly heartwarming to see children and guests of all ages take time to talk to these WWII veterans from 10 states,” said program co-chair Chris Madrid. “Their numbers are dwindling every day, but the veterans at WWII Heritage Days were happy to share their stories and receive thanks for their service. Among the attendees, one pilot flew three missions on D-Day in 1944, one veteran helped free prisoners at Dachau, Germany, and at least one was a prisoner of war.”

One family wrote after Saturday that their 89-year-old father had never felt so honored for his service, and he truly enjoyed talking to young children who came up to him during the day. He told his family he really felt like a hero.

Good weather on Saturday brought in record attendance of more than 3,000 people to meet the veterans, watch programs and demonstrations, buy flights in some of the vintage aircraft and witness a mock European battle created by reenactors. American Legion Post 50 provided hot sandwiches and the ever-popular Spam-burgers, and the Saturday night Hangar Dance was sold out for the fifth consecutive year.

The Dixie Wing saluted all Medal of Honor recipients during the weekend. The Hispanic Medal of Honor Society, based in Phoenix, Ariz., displayed five Medals of Honor, and several large panels with a history of the medal profiles of the 16 Hispanic Americans who received the honor during WWII.  The National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force in Savannah, Ga., also displayed a history of 17 Eighth Air Force airmen awarded the Medal of Honor during the Second World War. The Hispanic Medal of Honor Society also brought a 23-foot American flag flown from the USS Missouri battleship when it was recommissioned, and veterans held the flag for a special group photo.

DixieWWIIHeritage2018 LukeMcLaurine


WWII Heritage Days is the largest World War II-theme event in the state of Georgia, bringing together more than 25 historic aircraft, dozens of vintage military vehicles, antique cars, educational displays and demonstrations. More than 500 volunteers helped create the 1940s atmosphere, supported by WWII Heritage Days sponsors: Peachtree City Convention & Visitors Bureau, Stowers Machinery, Atlanta Regional Airport-Falcon Field, Lowe’s Refrigeration and Minuteman Press. Next year’s theme will be the 75th Anniversary of D-Day in Europe.

“The mission of WWII Heritage Days is to celebrate the 1940s, salute the Greatest Generation and inspire all ages to preserve the legacy of America’s veterans,” said Jim Buckley, leader of the all-volunteer Dixie Wing. “This year we accomplished that goal while celebrating Medal of Honor recipients and WWII veterans and including the famous B-17, ‘Texas Raiders,’ for tours and rides.”

About the CAF Dixie Wing Warbird Museum
The CAF Dixie Wing, based in Peachtree City, Ga., was founded in 1987. The Wing, one of the largest units of the Commemorative Air Force, maintains and flies seven WWII aircraft including a P-51 Mustang, an FG-1D Corsair and rare types such as the SBD Dauntless dive bomber and P-63A Kingcobra. The unit, composed of 300 volunteers, is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization that relies on contributions of time and funds to carry out the mission of the CAF. For more information, go to www.dixiewing.org.

The Commemorative Air Force is a non-profit organization dedicated to flying and restoring World War II aircraft. Based in Dallas, Texas, the organization has more than 13,000 members and owns a fleet of 174 WWII aircraft.  www.commemorativeairforce.org

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Contact:

Steve Forsyth

Public Information Officer

CAF Dixie Wing

770-714-7750

sforsyth106@gmail.com

WWII photo 2018RodReily

(Photo- Reenactors capture the attention of young and old when volunteers recreate the aura of the 1940s at World War II Heritage Days. This year's event is April 21-22 at the CAF Dixie Wing Warbird Museum and grounds in Peachtree City, Georgia. Photo courtesy of Rod Reilly.)

WWII Heritage Days Honors Veterans and Medal of Honor Recipients

B-17 Bomber and CAF Dixie Wing Aircraft Offer Rides

PEACHTREE CITY, GA. (April 11, 2018) –  Nearly 50 World War II veterans will be honored at 11 a.m. Saturday, April 21 during the 15th Annual World War II Heritage Days weekend hosted by the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) Dixie Wing at the CAF Dixie Wing Warbird Museum, Atlanta Regional Airport-Falcon Field, in Peachtree City, Georgia. Rare vintage aircraft, including the restored B-17 Flying Fortress, “Texas Raiders,” will complete the World War II atmosphere and offer rides to the public.

The Dixie Wing also is saluting all Medal of Honor recipients during the weekend, April 21-22, with one recipient, Bennie Adkins, present. Alabama native Adkins was honored for his heroism under fire in Viet Nam in 1966. The Hispanic Medal of Honor Society, based in Phoenix, Arizona, will bring an exhibit that includes five Medals of Honor, and several large panels with a history of the medal profiles of the 16 Hispanic Americans who received the honor during World War II.  The five medals will be on display Friday through Sunday and will be available for media day on April 20. The National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force in Savannah, Georgia, also plans to provide a display of 17 Eighth Air Force airmen awarded the Medal of Honor during the Second World War. 


WWII Heritage Days is the largest World War II-theme event in the state of Georgia, bringing together over 25 historic aircraft, dozens of vintage military vehicles, antique cars, educational displays and demonstrations. More than 500 volunteers will help create the 1940s atmosphere, with reenactors scheduled to stage mock battles at 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The popular Hangar Dance on Saturday night is sold out.

“The mission of WWII Heritage Days is to celebrate the 1940s, salute the Greatest Generation and inspire all ages to preserve the legacy of America’s veterans,” said Jim Buckley, leader of the all-volunteer Dixie Wing. “This year will be an amazing experience as we celebrate Medal of Honor recipients and WWII veterans, and bring the famous B-17 Texas Raiders, to join with our WWII fleet.”

Rides can be purchased in the CAF Dixie Wing’s aircraft and B-17 Texas Raiders, with all proceeds going to benefit the respective aircraft and group’s education mission. Also joining WWII Heritage Days is the Army Aviation Heritage Foundation, displaying and flying helicopters of the Viet Nam War.

Suggested donations for WWII Heritage Days are $10 for adults 17 and older and $5 for children 11-17. Children 10 and under and World War II veterans are admitted free. WWII Heritage Days will take place rain or shine. Please no pets. For more information, please visit www.wwiidays.org or call (678) 364-1110.

About the CAF Dixie Wing Warbird Museum
The CAF Dixie Wing, based in Peachtree City, Georgia, was founded in 1987. The Wing, one of the largest units of the Commemorative Air Force, maintains and flies seven World War II aircraft including a P-51 Mustang, an FG-1D Corsair and rare types such as the SBD Dauntless dive bomber and P-63A Kingcobra. The unit, composed of 300 volunteers, is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization that relies on contributions of time and funds to carry out the mission of the CAF. For more information, go to www.dixiewing.org.

The Commemorative Air Force is a non-profit organization dedicated to flying and restoring World War II aircraft. Based in Dallas, Texas, the organization has more than 12,000 members and owns a fleet of 174 WWII aircraft.  www.commemorativeairforce.org

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Contact:

Steve Forsyth

Public Information Officer

CAF Dixie Wing

(770) 714-7750

sforsyth106@gmail.com

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