Golden Age Air Tours’ magnificently restored Douglas DC-3A will be flying in Auburn this Friday and in Santa Rosa over the weekend. The historic aircraft will be giving free rides to WWII and Korean War veteran pilots in celebration of Armed Forces Day. It will also be offering scenic air tours to the general public.
This aircraft, one of very few original-build DC-3s still flying, rolled of the Douglas production line in Santa Monica during 1939. She was requisitioned by the Army Air Forces, and flew for a time as General Henry ‘Hap’ Arnold’s personal transport during WWII. In military service, she bore the the military serial 40-070 and the unique designation of C-41A, the only such aircraft of her variant.
Highly decorated WWII fighter pilot, 96 year old Col. ‘Bud’ Anderson will be taking a ride during the Auburn Airport ‘Friday Flyday’ event from 4 – 7:30pm Friday, May 18th. A portion of the proceeds from the air tours will benefit the Bud Anderson Scholarship fund. As many will know, Col.Anderson flew P-51 Mustangs with the 357th FG in the European Theatre, during which time he became a triple ace!
Armed Forces Day, Saturday, May 19th, sees the aircraft at the “Celebrating the Living Historians” festival at the Charles M. Schulz Sonoma County airport in Santa Rosa. This free event at the Pacific Coast Air Museum runs 10:00am – 2:00pm.
Golden Age Air Tours is donating a minimum of 2 free rides for every 8 seats sold to some of the few remaining pilots who flew similar aircraft during WWII and the Korean War. Some 40 veterans are expected to attend, and the aim is to fly as many as possible over the course of the weekend.
Those hoping to get a ride include pilots:
Jim Norem – a C-47 pilot who served in Italy
Lee Wildman – a US Navy R4D pilot
Del Tiedeman – an Army Air Corp C-47 pilot
Robert (Bob) Wilson – an Army Air Corp C-47 pilot
… not to mention 102 year old B-17 navigator Al Maggini, B-17 waist gunner and radio operator Elmo Fama and 101year old Army radio operator Fred Bollinger,
Those who sign up for a tour will not only enjoy a truly memorable flight in this majestic aircraft, but they will be helping to make this an extra special day for some of our few remaining veterans from the ‘Greatest Generation’ in celebration of Armed Forces Day.