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May 22, 2014

D-M helps maintain a Flying Fortress

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Senior Airman Sivan Veazie
355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Angel Thunder Public Affairs
U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Sivan Veazie
Volunteers pose for a group photo after cleaning a B-17 Flying Fortress aircraft at the 390th Memorial Museum in Tucson on May 10. More than 10 Airmen from D-M volunteered to help clean and polish the B-17 Flying Fortress.

More than 10 Airmen from D-M volunteered to clean and learn about different World War II aircraft, such as the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress, May 11.

The Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress is a four-engine heavy bomber aircraft, which was developed in the 1930s for the United States Army Air Corps. From its introduction in 1938, the B-17 Flying Fortress evolved through numerous design advances. The B-17 was primarily employed by the United States Army Air Forces in the daylight precision strategic bombing campaign of World War II against German industrial and military targets.

“Today, we are fortunate to have young Airmen from D-M to come out and help us make the B-17 look nice,” said Walters Scales, 390th Memorial Museum executive director. “Plus it gives the Airmen a chance to look around the museum to get a better understanding about this aircraft and its role in World War II.”

Most of the Airmen who volunteered were experienced A-10 Thunderbolt mechanics.

“Most of these Airmen deal with A-10s all day,” said Matthew Kilgore, 358th Aircraft Maintenance Unit dedicated crew chief. “Hopefully, this will inspire them to take more pride in their day-to-day work. This was a chance for some of the maintainers to learn about the heritage and experience the B-17 for themselves.”

The Airmen learned a lot about the heritage of the B-17 and other WWII aircraft and received a new found appreciation for the maintainers who came before them.

“I have never seen a B-17 before, so to be inside one was pretty cool,” said Airman 1st Class Yevgeniy Sokolov, 355th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron crew chief. “Old museums like this (usually) have volunteers who are veterans and it feels good to give back and help take some stress from them.”




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