The Wings Of Freedom Tour




The Wings Of Freedom Tour

By Daniel Baxter


August 19, 2009, the Collings Foundation’s Wings of Freedom Tour brings extremely rare bomber and fighter aircraft for local living history display as part of 110-city nationwide tour.  

Participating in the Collings Foundation’s Wings Of Freedom Tour, the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress “Nine O Nine” WWII Heavy Bomber, Consolidated B-24 Liberator “Witchcraft” WWII Heavy Bomber and P-51 Mustang, will fly into Lancaster County Airport in Lancaster, PA for a visit from August 21 to August 23.  

This is a rare opportunity to visit, explore, and learn more about these unique and rare treasures of aviation history. The B-17 is one of only 9 in flying condition in the United States, the B-24J and Dual Control P-51C Mustang are the sole remaining examples of their type flying in the World.  

Visitors are invited to explore the aircraft inside and out - Visitors may also experience the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to actually take a 30-minute flight aboard these rare aircraft.  


The Wings Of Freedom Tour will be on display at Lancaster County Airport in Lancaster, located at Main Ramp - Community Days Air Show. The Wings Of Freedom Tour will arrive at Lancaster County Airport at 2:00 PM on August 21 and will be on display at Main Ramp - Air Show at Lancaster County Airport until the aircraft departs August 23 at 5:00 PM. Hours of ground tours and display are: 2:00 PM through 5:00 PM on Friday, August 21; 10:00 AM through 5:00 PM on Saturday, August 22; 10:00 AM through 5:00 PM on Sunday, August 23. The 30-minute flight experiences are normally scheduled before and after the ground tour. 

The Wings Of Freedom Tour travels the nation a flying tribute to the flight crews who flew them, the ground crews who maintained them, the workers who built them, the soldiers, sailors and airmen they helped protect; and the citizens and families that share the freedom that they helped preserve.  

The B-17 & B-24 were the backbone of the American effort during the war from 1942 to 1945 and were famous for their ability to sustain damage and still accomplish the mission. Despite the risks of anti-aircraft fire, attacking enemy fighters, and the harrowing environment of sub-zero temperatures, many B-17s and B-24s safely brought their crews home. The P-51 Mustang was affectionately known as the bombers “Little Friend” – saving countless crews from attacking axis fighters. After the war, many aircraft were scrapped for their raw aluminum to rebuild a nation in post-war prosperity and therefore very few were spared. The rarity of the B-17, B-24 & P-51 - and their importance to telling the story of WWII is why the Collings Foundation continues to fly and display the aircraft nationwide. At each location we encourage local veterans and their families to visit and share their experiences and stories with the public. For aviation enthusiasts, the tour provides opportunity for the museum to come to the visitor and not the other way around!

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