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Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™

Boeing B-17F-10-BO "Memphis Belle" nose art. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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Boeing B-17F-10-BO "Memphis Belle" nose art. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Boeing B-17F-10-BO "Memphis Belle" in flight. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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Boeing B-17F-10-BO "Memphis Belle" in flight. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Boeing B-17F-10-BO "Memphis Belle" on tour at Patterson Field, Ohio. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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Boeing B-17F-10-BO "Memphis Belle" on tour at Patterson Field, Ohio. (U.S. Air Force photo)

The crew of the "Memphis Belle"® after their 25th mission: (l to r) TSgt. Harold Loch (top turret gunner/engineer), SSg.t Cecil Scott (ball turret gunner), TSgt. Robert Hanson (radio operator), Capt. James Verinis (copilot), Capt. Robert Morgan (pilot), Capt. Charles Leighton (navigator), SSgt. John Quinlan (tail gunner), SSgt. Casimer Nastal (waist gunner), Capt. Vincent Evans (bombardier), and SSgt. Clarence Winchell (waist gunner). (U.S. Air Force photo)
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The crew of the "Memphis Belle"® after their 25th mission: (l to r) TSgt. Harold Loch (top turret gunner/engineer), SSg.t Cecil Scott (ball turret gunner), TSgt. Robert Hanson (radio operator), Capt. James Verinis (copilot), Capt. Robert Morgan (pilot), Capt. Charles Leighton (navigator), SSgt. John Quinlan (tail gunner), SSgt. Casimer Nastal (waist gunner), Capt. Vincent Evans (bombardier), and SSgt. Clarence Winchell (waist gunner). (U.S. Air Force photo)

Gen. Hap Arnold, commander of the U.S. Army Air Forces, examining the "Mempis Belle" after it returned to the United States. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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Gen. Hap Arnold, commander of the U.S. Army Air Forces, examining the "Mempis Belle" after it returned to the United States. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (10/2005) -- (From left to right) 88th Air Base Wing Engineering Equipment Operator Chris Moon and National Museum of the United States Air Force Restoration Technicians Tim Ward and Greg Hassler unload the fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" into the museum's restoration hangar. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (10/2005) -- (From left to right) 88th Air Base Wing Engineering Equipment Operator Chris Moon and National Museum of the United States Air Force Restoration Technicians Tim Ward and Greg Hassler unload the fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" into the museum's restoration hangar. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" is readied for restoration at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" is readied for restoration at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio - Radio operator's compartment in the B-17 "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio - Radio operator's compartment in the B-17 "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio - Restoration Specialist Bob Webb points out the corrosion in the frame member of the B-17 "Memphis Belle." The newly pressed frame is behind the item being replaced. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio - Restoration Specialist Bob Webb points out the corrosion in the frame member of the B-17 "Memphis Belle." The newly pressed frame is behind the item being replaced. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio - Ball turret area in the aft fuselage section of the B-17 "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. Photo shows where corrosion was discovered in the area covered by a circuit breaker panel. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio - Ball turret area in the aft fuselage section of the B-17 "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. Photo shows where corrosion was discovered in the area covered by a circuit breaker panel. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - B-17 "Memphis Belle" inboard wing standing up beside F-86A fuel drop tanks in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - B-17 "Memphis Belle" inboard wing standing up beside F-86A fuel drop tanks in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Museum volunteer John Vance works on a "Memphis Belle" landing gear strut in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Museum volunteer John Vance works on a "Memphis Belle" landing gear strut in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Ball turret of the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Ball turret of the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Interior of the tail gunner section of the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Interior of the tail gunner section of the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Parts of the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Parts of the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - A section of the wing from the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - A section of the wing from the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Part of a wing from the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Part of a wing from the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - A section of a wing from the "Memphis Belle" at the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - A section of a wing from the "Memphis Belle" at the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Four Wright R-1820-97 turbosupercharged radials of 1200 hp each from the B-17F "Memphis Belle." These engines are in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Four Wright R-1820-97 turbosupercharged radials of 1200 hp each from the B-17F "Memphis Belle." These engines are in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - One of the the "Memphis Belle" engines, a Wright R-1820-97 turbosupercharged radial of 1,200 hp, in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - One of the the "Memphis Belle" engines, a Wright R-1820-97 turbosupercharged radial of 1,200 hp, in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Part of the a wing from the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Part of the a wing from the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Tail gunner position of the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Tail gunner position of the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Ball turret of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Ball turret of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Part of a wing from the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Part of a wing from the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - The B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - The B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Memorial sign that sits in front of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Memorial sign that sits in front of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Interior fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Interior fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - A close-up of the nose art of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" while in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - A close-up of the nose art of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" while in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - The B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - The B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)
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DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)

DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The aircraft is being stripped to bare metal. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)
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DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The aircraft is being stripped to bare metal. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)

DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. This photo shows some of the graffiti on the aircraft. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)
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DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. This photo shows some of the graffiti on the aircraft. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)

DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The aircraft is being stripped to bare metal. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)
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DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The aircraft is being stripped to bare metal. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)

DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- A section of the wing from the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)
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DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- A section of the wing from the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)

DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)
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DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)

DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- Ball turret of the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)
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DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- Ball turret of the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)

DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- Museum volunteer Steve Markman works on the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)
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DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- Museum volunteer Steve Markman works on the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)

DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- Wright R-1820-97 turbosupercharged radial engines from the B-17F "Memphis Belle." These engines are in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- Wright R-1820-97 turbosupercharged radial engines from the B-17F "Memphis Belle." These engines are in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (10/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- A section of the wing from the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- A section of the wing from the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- A section of the wing from the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- A section of the wing from the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/2007) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" undergoing restoration at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Tom Bachman tags a section of the famous B-17 bomber, Memphis Belle, in the Restoration Division of the National Museum of the United States of the Air Force on Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio. The restoration is expected to take ten year restoration to complete. The museum is the world's largest and oldest military aviation museum featuring 400 aerospace vehicles on more than 17 acres of indoor exhibit space. Mr. Bachman is a restoration specialist. (U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Cecilio Ricardo)
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Tom Bachman tags a section of the famous B-17 bomber, Memphis Belle, in the Restoration Division of the National Museum of the United States of the Air Force on Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio. The restoration is expected to take ten year restoration to complete. The museum is the world's largest and oldest military aviation museum featuring 400 aerospace vehicles on more than 17 acres of indoor exhibit space. Mr. Bachman is a restoration specialist. (U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Cecilio Ricardo)

DAYTON, Ohio - B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the Restoration Hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.  (U.S. Air Force Photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio - B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the Restoration Hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force Photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Memorial sign that sits in front of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2007) - Memorial sign that sits in front of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration area of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ben Strasser)

Tom Bachman tags a section of the famous B-17 bomber, Memphis Belle, in the Restoration Division of the National Museum of the United States of the Air Force on Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio. The restoration is expected to take ten year restoration to complete. The museum is the world's largest and oldest military aviation museum featuring 400 aerospace vehicles on more than 17 acres of indoor exhibit space. Mr. Bachman is a restoration specialist. (U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Cecilio Ricardo)
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Tom Bachman tags a section of the famous B-17 bomber, Memphis Belle, in the Restoration Division of the National Museum of the United States of the Air Force on Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio. The restoration is expected to take ten year restoration to complete. The museum is the world's largest and oldest military aviation museum featuring 400 aerospace vehicles on more than 17 acres of indoor exhibit space. Mr. Bachman is a restoration specialist. (U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Cecilio Ricardo)

DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- Museum volunteer Steve Markman works on the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)
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DAYTON, Ohio (07/2007) -- Museum volunteer Steve Markman works on the "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (Photo courtesy of Craig Scaling, Airshow Traveler)

DAYTON, Ohio (8/31/2009) - The B-17F Memphis Belle tail gun position in the Restoration Hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The sheet metal is being repainted and fabricated as needed. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (8/31/2009) - The B-17F Memphis Belle tail gun position in the Restoration Hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The sheet metal is being repainted and fabricated as needed. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio - Members of the 315th Maintenance Squadron out of Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., work on a stand for the B-17F Memphis Belle's wing during a two-week stay at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, where the group worked in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio - Members of the 315th Maintenance Squadron out of Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., work on a stand for the B-17F Memphis Belle's wing during a two-week stay at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, where the group worked in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio - Members of the 315th Maintenance Squadron out of Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., piece together a holding fixture for the B-17F Memphis Belle's wing during their two-week stay at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, where the group worked in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio - Members of the 315th Maintenance Squadron out of Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., piece together a holding fixture for the B-17F Memphis Belle's wing during their two-week stay at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, where the group worked in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (04/2010) -- A restoration specialist works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the Restoration Hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. William Greer)
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DAYTON, Ohio (04/2010) -- A restoration specialist works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the Restoration Hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. William Greer)

DAYTON, Ohio (04/2010) -- Restoration specialist Nick Almeter works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the Restoration Hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. William Greer)
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DAYTON, Ohio (04/2010) -- Restoration specialist Nick Almeter works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the Restoration Hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. William Greer)

DAYTON, Ohio (11/2010) -- Boeing B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/2010) -- Boeing B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (11/2010) -- Boeing B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/2010) -- Boeing B-17F "Memphis Belle" in restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, OHIO (12/2011) -- Restoration specialist Dave Robb works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, OHIO (12/2011) -- Restoration specialist Dave Robb works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (12/2011) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (12/2011) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (12/2011) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (12/2011) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (08/2014) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Duane Jones, Roger Brigner, and Chad Vanhook prepare to attach the vertical stabilizer to the fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle"® at the museum's restoration hangar. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on display in the museum's World War II Gallery in spring 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (08/2014) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Duane Jones, Roger Brigner, and Chad Vanhook prepare to attach the vertical stabilizer to the fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle"® at the museum's restoration hangar. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on display in the museum's World War II Gallery in spring 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (08/2014) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Duane Jones, Chad Vanhook, and Roger Brigner attach the vertical stabilizer to the fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle"® at the museum's restoration hangar. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on display in the museum's World War II Gallery in spring 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (08/2014) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Duane Jones, Chad Vanhook, and Roger Brigner attach the vertical stabilizer to the fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle"® at the museum's restoration hangar. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on display in the museum's World War II Gallery in spring 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (08/2014) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Chad Vanhook, Roger Brigner, and Duane Jones attach the vertical stabilizer to the fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle"® at the museum's restoration hangar. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on display in the museum's World War II Gallery in spring 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (08/2014) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Chad Vanhook, Roger Brigner, and Duane Jones attach the vertical stabilizer to the fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle"® at the museum's restoration hangar. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on display in the museum's World War II Gallery in spring 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (08/2014) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Roger Brigner, and Duane Jones attach the vertical stabilizer to the fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle"® at the museum's restoration hangar. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on display in the museum's World War II Gallery in spring 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (08/2014) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Roger Brigner, and Duane Jones attach the vertical stabilizer to the fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle"® at the museum's restoration hangar. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on display in the museum's World War II Gallery in spring 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (08/2014) -- Restoration specialist Roger Brigner works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (08/2014) -- Restoration specialist Roger Brigner works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (12/2014) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (12/2014) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (12/2014) -- The vertical stabilizer of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (12/2014) -- The vertical stabilizer of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (12/2014) -- A horizontal stabilizer of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (12/2014) -- A horizontal stabilizer of the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio -- Museum Restoration staff install the pilot’s instrument panel donated by officials from the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- Museum Restoration staff install the pilot’s instrument panel donated by officials from the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" and the pilot’s instrument panel in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" and the pilot’s instrument panel in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio --  Henry Skipper, president/CEO of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force speaks about the pilot’s instrument panel donation to the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- Henry Skipper, president/CEO of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force speaks about the pilot’s instrument panel donation to the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" and the pilot’s instrument panel in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" and the pilot’s instrument panel in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (03/2016) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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DAYTON, Ohio (03/2016) -- The B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (02/2017) -- Restoration crews cleaned the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle, and moved it to another hangar with additional space on Feb. 22, 2017 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- Restoration crews from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force install the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- Restoration crews from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force install the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- Restoration crews from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force install the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- Restoration crews from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force install the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- Restoration crews from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force install the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- Restoration crews from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force install the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- (From left to right) National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration specialists Casey Simmons and Chase Meredith install the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- (From left to right) National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration specialists Casey Simmons and Chase Meredith install the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- Restoration crews from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force install the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- Restoration crews from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force install the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- Restoration crews from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force install the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- Restoration crews from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force install the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- Restoration crews from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force installed the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- Restoration crews from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force installed the final wing-tip on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™ on March 22, 2017. The famed B-17F Memphis Belle™ and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the US after completing 25 combat missions over Europe. The USAAF chose the Memphis Belle for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990). The Memphis Belle will be placed on public display at the museum on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

National Museum of the USAF-Plans call for this early B-5 flight helmet to be displayed near the Memphis Belle™ as part of the new strategic bombardment exhibit in the WWII Gallery, which opens to the public on May 17, 2018. Some of the Eighth Air Force bomber crewmen wore these in 1942 and early 1943. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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National Museum of the USAF-Plans call for this early B-5 flight helmet to be displayed near the Memphis Belle™ as part of the new strategic bombardment exhibit in the WWII Gallery, which opens to the public on May 17, 2018. Some of the Eighth Air Force bomber crewmen wore these in 1942 and early 1943. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- A view of the ball turret from the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- A view of the ball turret from the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- A view of the ball turret from the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- A view of the ball turret from the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Casey Simmons and Brian Lindamood work on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Casey Simmons and Brian Lindamood work on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Brian Lindamood and Casey Simmons work on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Brian Lindamood and Casey Simmons work on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- Restoration specialist Casey Simmons works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- Restoration specialist Casey Simmons works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle" in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Brian Lindamood and Casey Simmons work on the fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Brian Lindamood and Casey Simmons work on the fuselage of the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Chase Meredith and Jason Davis work on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Chase Meredith and Jason Davis work on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Jason Davis and Chase Meredith work on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Jason Davis and Chase Meredith work on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Jason Davis and Chase Meredith work on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Jason Davis and Chase Meredith work on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- Restoration Specialist Duane Jones works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- Restoration Specialist Duane Jones works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- Restoration Specialist Duane Jones works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- Restoration Specialist Duane Jones works on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Duane Jones and Roger Brigner work on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (06/2017) -- (From left to right) Restoration Specialists Duane Jones and Roger Brigner work on the B-17F "Memphis Belle"™ in the restoration hangar at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. The exhibit opening for this aircraft is planned for May 17, 2018.(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews install the tail turret (tail gunner position) on the B-17F Memphis Belle™ on July 26, 2017. This aircraft will be placed on public display here at the museum on May 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy Kevin Lush)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews install the tail turret (tail gunner position) on the B-17F Memphis Belle™ on July 26, 2017. This aircraft will be placed on public display here at the museum on May 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy Kevin Lush)

DAYTON, Ohio -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews install the tail turret (tail gunner position) on the B-17F Memphis Belle™ on July 26, 2017. This aircraft will be placed on public display here at the museum on May 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy Kevin Lush)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews install the tail turret (tail gunner position) on the B-17F Memphis Belle™ on July 26, 2017. This aircraft will be placed on public display here at the museum on May 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy Kevin Lush)

DAYTON, Ohio -- View of the tail turret (tail gunner position) on the B-17F Memphis Belle™ on July 26, 2017. This aircraft will be placed on public display here at the museum on May 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy Kevin Lush)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- View of the tail turret (tail gunner position) on the B-17F Memphis Belle™ on July 26, 2017. This aircraft will be placed on public display here at the museum on May 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy Kevin Lush)

DAYTON, Ohio -- View of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ on July 26, 2017 in the museum's restoration building. This aircraft will be placed on public display here at the museum on May 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy Kevin Lush)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- View of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ on July 26, 2017 in the museum's restoration building. This aircraft will be placed on public display here at the museum on May 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy Kevin Lush)

DAYTON, Ohio -- Black and white view of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ on July 26, 2017 in the museum's restoration building. This aircraft will be placed on public display here at the museum on May 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy Kevin Lush)
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DAYTON, Ohio -- Black and white view of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ on July 26, 2017 in the museum's restoration building. This aircraft will be placed on public display here at the museum on May 17, 2018. (Photo courtesy Kevin Lush)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- View of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in the restoration hangar before cleaning. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration crews tow the B-17F Memphis Belle™ outside for cleaning of the aircraft, which was done in preparation for painting. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration crews tow the B-17F Memphis Belle™ outside for cleaning in preparation for painting of the aircraft. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialists clean the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for painting of the aircraft. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialists clean the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for painting of the aircraft. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialists Jason Davis and Casey Simmons, clean the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for painting. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialists Jason Davis and Casey Simmons, clean the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for painting. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialists Jason Davis and Casey Simmons, clean the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for painting. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialist Brian Lindamood, cleans the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for painting. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialist Nick Almeter, cleans the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for painting. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialists Chad Vanhook and Brian Lindamood, clean the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for painting. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialists Chad Vanhook and Brian Lindamood, clean the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for painting. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialists clean the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for painting of the aircraft. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- The B-17F Memphis Belle™ dries out in the sun after museum restoration crews cleaned the aircraft in preparation for painting. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- A general view of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ tail gun position. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- Museum restoration crews tow the B-17F Memphis Belle™ back into a hangar after cleaning the aircraft, which was done in preparation for painting. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

B-17F Memphis Belle™
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 8, 2017) -- The B-17F Memphis Belle™ in restoration(foreground), and a view of the museum's main complex(background). Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- An interior view of the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in the museum's restoration hangar. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Don Popp)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- An interior view of the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in the museum's restoration hangar. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialist Casey Simmons(left) and 88th ABW civil engineer Chris Moon(right) work on installing the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for the exhibit opening. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- Museum restoration crews and 88th ABW civil engineers work to install the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for the exhibit opening. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- Museum restoration crews and 88th ABW civil engineers work to install the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for the exhibit opening. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- Museum restoration crews and 88th ABW civil engineers work to install the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for the exhibit opening. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialists Jason Davis and Casey Simmons work to install the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for the exhibit opening. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialists Chase Meredith and Nick Almeter work on installing the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for the exhibit opening. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialists Chase Meredith and Nick Almeter work on installing the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for the exhibit opening. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialist Jason Davis works on installing the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for the exhibit opening. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- Museum restoration crews work on installing the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for the exhibit opening. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- Museum restoration specialists Nick Almeter and Casey Simmons work on installing the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in preparation for the exhibit opening. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (Aug. 16, 2017) -- A general view of the upper turret of the B-17F Memphis Belle™ in the museum's restoration hangar. Plans call for the aircraft to be on public display here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/3/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/8/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/8/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/3/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/8/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/3/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/8/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/8/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/8/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/8/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/8/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/8/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

(U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)
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DAYTON, Ohio (11/8/2017) -- National Museum of the U.S. Air Force restoration crews continue the painting process on the Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle™. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery here at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)


Note: This aircraft is currently undergoing restoration. You can view the restoration progress by participating in the museum's Behind the Scenes Tour. Additional information about the aircraft's restoration is available on the Restoration Projects page. Plans call for this aircraft to be on display in the WWII Gallery on May 17, 2018.

The Memphis Belle, a B-17F Flying Fortress, is one of the most famous aircraft in history. In May 1943 it became the first U.S. Army Air Forces heavy bomber to complete 25 missions over Europe and return to the United States. The pilot, then-Lt. Robert Morgan, named the aircraft after his wartime girlfriend, Margaret Polk, of Memphis, Tenn. Lt. Morgan chose the artwork from a 1941 George Petty illustration in Esquire magazine.

Flying in the 324th Bomb Squadron of the 91st Bomb Group (Heavy), the Memphis Belle and its crew of 10 flew their first combat mission on Nov. 7, 1942. Until the arrival of long-range fighters later in the war, USAAF heavy bombers often flew without escort for part of their missions. Faced with hordes of enemy aircraft, deadly antiaircraft fire and the lack of friendly fighters in the target area, it was highly unlikely that a bomber crew would finish their required 25 missions.

The crew of the Memphis Belle beat the odds with their 25th combat mission on May 17, 1943, against the naval yard at Lorient, France. Interestingly, this raid was the Belle's 24th combat mission--the original crew occasionally flew missions on other 91st BG (H) B-17s (and others took the Belle on some missions also). So, on May 19, the Memphis Belle flew its 25th combat mission on a strike against Kiel, Germany, while manned by a different crew.

Upon their return to the United States in June 1943, the Memphis Belle's crew flew the aircraft across the country on a three-month war bond and morale boosting tour. With the bond tour and the 1944 William Wyler documentary film titled The Memphis Belle -- depicting actual combat footage -- the aircraft and its crew became widely known and celebrated. In 1990 a major motion picture of the same name added to their fame.

For many, the story of the Memphis Belle has become a timeless symbol of all the heroic USAAF bomber crews who flew against Nazi Germany in World War II. In need of a thorough restoration, the Memphis Belle arrived at the National Museum of the United States Air Force in October 2005. A careful, multi-year conservation and restoration effort by museum staff -- including corrosion treatment, the full outfitting of missing equipment and accurate markings -- will bring the Memphis Belle back to pristine condition.

TECHNICAL NOTES:
Armament:
13 .50-cal machine guns (normally only 12 on combat missions) and 8,000 lbs. of bombs
Engines: Four 1,200 hp Wright R-1820-97 turbosupercharged radials
Maximum speed: 325 mph
Range: 2,800 miles
Ceiling: 37,500 ft.

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Find Out More
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Videos
Vertical Stabilizer Installation (00:01:43)
Memphis Belle Restoration Milestones (00:03:13)
Restoring the Memphis Belle (00:08:43)
"Belle" An Ageless Beauty (00:04:27)
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Lectures
Jeff Duford: "Memphis Belle: Restoring an Icon" (00:57:22)
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Air Force Museum Foundation
View Memphis Belle products in the Museum Store
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Other Resources
Memphis Memorial Project (Lausanne Collegiate School)
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