Restored B-17 coming to Statesboro this weekend

BULLOCH CO., GA (WTOC) - This weekend, you have a chance to experience aviation history in Statesboro.

One of the few remaining B-17 bombers from World War II will be there for people to see, tour, and even experience a once in a lifetime flight. Only a dozen of the planes remain and only half of them are flying. The Experimental Aircraft Association takes one of them around the country for people to see. Pilots with the EAA see all sorts of responses from people who go out to see it, especially people connected to the pilots who flew B-17s on bombing missions during the war.

"I think there's always a connection. The war's only been over 70 something years ago, so there's attachment. Very few veterans anymore come out, but the family members, there's a lot of emotional ties," said B-17 pilot, John Ricciotti. "There's nothing like it. That brings you back to 1942, 43, 44, 45, when 10 young men were in here risking their lives in freezing cold temperatures to try to protect our feedom."

The plane - The Aluminum Overcast - came in at the end of World War II, but flew military missions after that. The pilots take this one all around the country from their base in Oshkosh, WI.

Flights will be available at the Statesboro-Bulloch County Airport from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday, June 15, 16 and 17, weather permitting. Ground tours will be from 2 to 5 p.m. each day.  There is a $10 fee for touring inside the plane, but it's free for veterans and active-duty military. The cost for a flight is $475.

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