PRESS RELEASE-The Commemorative Air Force (CAF) AirPower History Tour is bringing an unprecedented collection of World War II aircraft to their Midwest summer tour stops. FIFI, the queen of the fleet and the world’s only flying B-29 Superfortress, will be accompanied at many stops by a P-51 Mustang, SB2C Helldiver, C-45 Expeditor and Stearman. The tour is also excited to include Cavanaugh Flight Museum’s F4U Corsair. This FG1D model has the unique distinction of being one of the few Corsairs in the country approved for paying riders. Visitors to the events will experience “hands on” history having the opportunity to view the airplanes and purchase rides in attending aircraft.The Boeing B-29 Superfortress, first flown in 1942, began active service in 1944 and is best known as the aircraft whose missions over Japan helped bring about the end of World War II. It was designed as a replacement for the older B-17s and B-24s, with longer range and greater bomb loads. The B-29 was also used in the Korean War in the early 1950s and was a staple of the U.S. Air Force until the late 1950s.
The CAF AirPower History Tour visits airports throughout the United States using the aircraft to tell the stories of World War II aviation. The organization believes those stories are best told with aircraft that still fly — bringing the sights, sounds and stories of World War II aviation history to the public at large. This summer and early fall the tour will stop in 13 cities throughout the Midwest. More information about individual tour stops can be found at AirPowerTour.org. The tour stops include:
Lexington, KY, July 8-12
Kankakee, IL, July 13-15
Madison, WI, July 16-19
Oshkosh, WI, July 20-27
Cedar Rapids, IA, July 29-August 2
Fort Wayne, IN, August 25-26
Detroit, MI, August 27-30
Cincinnati, OH, September 2-6
St. Louis, MO, September 9-13
Branson, MO, September 14-16
Great Bend, KS, September 17-20
Muskogee, OK, September 21-23
Olathe, KS, September 25-27
About the CAF’s B-29 Superfortress, FIFI:
FIFI was acquired by the CAF in the early 1970s when a group of CAF members found her at the U.S. Navy Proving Ground at China Lake, California where she was being used as a missile target. The airplane was rescued and restored and flew for over thirty years until 2006 when the chief pilot made the decision to ground her pending a complete power plant re-fit. What followed was an extensive four year restoration that included replacing all four engines with new custom built hybrid engines. FIFI returned to the sky in 2010 and since that time has traveled coast to coast attracting large crowds at every tour stop. Learn more about FIFI and her tour schedule at www.AirPowerTour.org.
About Cavanaugh Flight Museums Corsair:
The famous gull-wing design of the F4U Corsair makes the plane one of the most distinctive fighters of World War II. Designed and built by Chance-Vought, the Corsair prototype first flew on May 29, 1940. It was the world’s first single-engine fighter capable of speeds over 400 mph in level flight. Though first rejected by the U.S Navy, the F4U proved to be one of the best all-around fighters of World War II and was the only American piston engine World War II fighter produced in large numbers after 1945.During World War II the Corsair proved more than a match for the Japanese Zero and other advanced Japanese fighters. The Corsair achieved an impressive eleven-to-one victory ratio against Japanese aircraft. Corsairs also excelled in the ground attack role and were heavily employed as close air support aircraft during the Pacific island hopping campaign. When not touring the airplane can be seen at Cavanaugh Flight Museum in Addison, Texas.
Information about other touring aircraft can be found at www.AirPowerTour.org.
About the Commemorative Air Force:
The Commemorative Air Force honors the men and women who built, maintained, and flew in these airplanes during World War II. The organization believes that is best accomplished by maintaining the airplanes in flying condition; taking the airplanes to the people allowing them to experience the sight and sound of the aircraft in flight.
Collecting, restoring and flying vintage historical aircraft for more than half a century, the Commemorative Air Force ranks as one of the largest private air forces in the world. The CAF is dedicated to Honoring American Military Aviation through flight, exhibition and remembrance. A non-profit educational association, the CAF has more than 12,000 members and a fleet of over 160 airplanes distributed throughout the country to 63 units located in 25 states for care and operation. For more information, visit www.commemorativeairforce.org.