History Takes Flight

By: Mike Tolbert
By: Mike Tolbert

The sight of a of B-17 flying fortress spinning its propellers brings back plenty of memories for former pilot Jim Armstrong, especially one day 62 years ago.

"I was shot down on Labor Day 1943 in Normandy, France coming back from Stuttgart Germany.

But with the help of the French he managed to escape to England, and today he's a bit giddy.

"Well, I wanna get a ride in it cause its been a long time since I've been in a B-17.

1944 to be exact, but he finally got his chance.

"And I got permission from my wife to do it."

The Experimental Aircraft Association has brought the B-17 to Tallahassee as part of a nationwide tour commemorating 60 years since the end of World War II.

The tour is a chance to keep the plane's history alive and give those who know the B-17 best one last ride.

"Feels good to be on the ground, but it was nice to go up for one time I think that's going to be my last flight."

The public is also invited to fly on the B-17 for a price. Simply call 1-920-371-2246 for more information. If you're scared of heights, ground tours are also available. The plane will be here in town through Sunday.


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