SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - The B-17 Bomber earned it’s name “The Flying Fortress” in all theaters of war in World War II, but it is mainly known for runs over Germany.
For one former vet who flew in the B-17, it takes him back to a place he tries to put away.
“It brings back a lot of memories that I’d just as soon as forget. More vivid today, when you go through the plane, it comes back refreshed," said Gordon Fenwick, B-17 Radio Op./Gunner.
Fenwick flew on 35 missions out of England on bombing runs over Germany. Once he knew exactly what each run entailed, they weren’t really scared to take that mission, finding a way to deal with the danger involved.
“It was kind of rough. We were kind of immune to any intrepidation or fear of going up the next day. You kind of felt like the next one could be your last, you kind of adjusted your mind to it, and you pretty much focused on what you had to do," Fenwick said.
We are losing more than 370,000 World War II veterans a day. Gone are the individual stories that all lived out, which is one of the reasons why having this piece of history is so significant.
“It’s absolutely important because we are flying it, we’re operating it. It’s not like it’s in a museum where you’re never going to hear it, see it, smell it, and that’s what we want to continue for years to come," said Cullen Underwood, Madras Maiden Pilot.
To be able to put your hands on this living piece of history, the Madras Maiden, is truly a unique experience. It’s one of only twelve B-17s that is still in flyable condition.
The Madras Maiden will be at Savannah Aviation on Oct. 27 and 28. Flight experience cost $450. There is no charge for ground tours, but donations are encouraged.
For more information, click here.