Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Wing to dedicate hangar to Raiders

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. – On Wednesday in a hangar at Eglin Air Force Base, the military's newest stealth aircraft, the F-35, will line up facing a B-25, known for a stealthy World War II attack. The 33rd Fighter Wing planned the pairing as part of the ceremony to dedicate an F-35 hangar to Ret. Lt. Col. Ed Saylor, one of the last surviving Doolittle Raiders. He'll be in town for the 71st and final reunion this week. Saylor was a maintenance crew chief for one of the 16 crews that participated in the April 18, 1942 raid in which 80 airmen took off in B-25s from the USS Hornet to bombs Tokyo. It was the first American attack on Japan after Pearl Harbor was attacked in December 1941. The Raiders trained for the mission at Eglin Air Force Base on how to conduct short takeoffs. (Sources: Northwest Florida Daily News, 04/15/13) Bob Greene column, A final toast for the Doolittle Raiders, 04/14/13)