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68th Doolittle Raiders Reunion
Seventeen B-25 Mitchell bombers flew over the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force during a memorial flight honoring the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders on April 18, 2010. Efforts are now underway by the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders Association, Inc. to surpass that number for the Raiders' 70th anniversary reunion in 2012. (Courtesy photo)
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 GENERAL JAMES HAROLD DOOLITTLE
Doolittle Tokyo Raiders planning 70th anniversary reunion and historical aviation event

Posted 7/27/2011   Updated 7/27/2011 Email story   Print story

    


by Rob Bardua
National Museum of the U.S. Air Force


7/27/2011 - DAYTON, Ohio -- The Doolittle Tokyo Raiders are in the final stages of planning their reunion commemorating the 70th anniversary of the Raid. The reunion will be held at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, April 17-20, 2012.

The reunion will include autograph sessions, a memorial service at the museum, as well as a public lunch and banquet.

All five of the living Doolittle Tokyo Raiders are able to travel and plan to be on-hand for the reunion events.

Also, for the first time in seventy years, Chinese survivors or members of their families who helped save the Raiders will travel to the United States and be special guests at the reunion. Surviving sailors and officers of the USS Hornet, the aircraft carrier that sailed them to their take off point, will also be present.

According to National Museum of the U.S. Air Force director, Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Jack Hudson, it is an honor and privilege for the museum to be selected as the site for the 2012 gathering.

"As 'the keepers of their stories,' we feel there is no better location than the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force to continue to tell the story of the Doolittle Raid, said Hudson. "The museum's mission is to educate current and future generations about the rich aviation history of the U.S. Air Force, and to preserve and portray the stories of men and women who have selflessly served their nation as Airmen, just as the Doolittle Raiders did nearly 70 years ago."

As a special tribute to the Raiders during the reunion, efforts are underway by the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders Association, Inc. to secure sponsorship funding to fly in and land 25 B-25 Mitchell Bombers on the runway behind the museum. This aviation event would be the largest gathering of B-25s since WWII and would surpass the 17 B-25s that were able to be present at the Raider Reunion at the museum in 2010.

Those interested in helping to make this flight of B-25 bombers possible should contact Tom Casey with the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders Association, Inc. at (941) 921-7361 or by email at tomcat911@comcast.net or Larry Kelley, B-25 coordinator, b25driver@aol.com or 410-991-2356. (Federal endorsement is not implied.)

The Air Force Museum Foundation is also seeking sponsorship support for the 70th Anniversary Doolittle Tokyo Raiders Reunion activities at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. Those interested in helping to make this event possible should contact Lin Erickson, Chief Development Officer of the Air Force Museum Foundation, at 937-656-9258 or lerickson@afmuseum.com.

Additional information on the reunion including instructions on how to purchase lunch and dinner tickets will be made available closer to the event on the museum's website at www.nationalmuseum.af.mil.

The National Museum of the United States Air Force is located on Springfield Street, six miles northeast of downtown Dayton. It is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week (closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day). Admission and parking are free.


NOTE TO PUBLIC: For developing information on the Doolittle Toyko Raiders Reunion, please periodically visit www.nationalmuseum@af.mil. An information phone line will be established closer to the event.
 
NOTE TO MEDIA: For more information, please contact Rob Bardua at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force Public Affairs Division at (937) 255-1386
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tabComments
1/8/2012 10:07:04 PM ET
I will be there with my nine year old. He is the youngest WWII expert I know of.
Evan Silos, North Carolina
 
11/27/2011 5:09:31 PM ET
I won't miss this one this time and will try to bring a War hero with me, Lt. Donald Burch, 8th Airforce, B-24 Pilot station in England. He was part of the Battle of the Bulge.
Ricardo, Montgomery Village MD
 
11/22/2011 7:42:34 PM ET
I am trying to make plans to attend this event. I hope there will be a large post when tickets will be available for purchase. I check daily.
Adam Trabold, Johnstown pa
 
11/20/2011 2:30:17 PM ET
Trying to make plans to attend this event. I met a couple of the raiders in Stuart, Florida several years ago. I spent a day in the musem last year but it just was not enough time to do it justice.
Jack Payne, PSL Florida
 
8/19/2011 4:26:33 PM ET
This is an opportunity of a lifetime for me to meet heroes of WWII and thank them for what they did. I can't wait for this. THANK YOU.
Rick Feemster, HuntingtonIN.
 
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