Published In Midwest Flyer – February/March 2019 issue
WASHINGTON, DC – The Arsenal of Democracy Executive Planning Committee has announced that it is planning a second Arsenal of Democracy Flyover that will take place on Friday, May 8, 2020, to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II (WWII) in Europe and in the Pacific.
As part of a thrilling two-day celebration in the nation’s capital, the flyover will coincide with a ceremony for veterans at the National World War II Memorial, and will consist of a vast assortment of U.S. and Allied WWII aircraft flying overhead in 24 separate historically sequenced warbird formations. The formations will represent the war’s major battles, from the Battle of Britain through the final air assault on Japan, and conclude with a missing man formation.
Nearly 100 vintage warbirds of various types are expected to participate. Aircraft are being provided by multiple organizations and individuals whose mission is to preserve these historic artifacts in flying condition. These organizations include the largest vintage military aircraft organization – the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) – providing fighter, bomber and transport aircraft. Additionally, organizations such as the Dakota Territory Air Museum, will provide historical aircraft to include the P-40 Warhawk, P-39 Airacobra, P-38 Lightning, P-51 Mustang, P-47 Thunderbolt, F4U Corsair, B-25 Mitchell, B-17 Flying Fortress, Lancaster, Spitfire, Hurricane and many others.
On the day of the flyover, the Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial Commission will dedicate the Dwight D. Eisenhower National Memorial, which is being constructed directly across from the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, adjacent to Independence Avenue, S.W. The memorial will honor Dwight Eisenhower as the 34th president of the United States and as Supreme Commander of Allied Forces during WWII, recognizing Eisenhower as the last military general to serve as President of the United States, and one who led the Allied Forces to victory in Europe. Among the many combat veteran WWII aircraft participating, a special formation of C-47 aircraft will fly over the new memorial, led by the C-47 ‘That’s All Brother,’ which was the actual transport to first drop paratroopers during the Normandy invasion.
In addition to the flyover, Arsenal of Democracy events will include a gala dinner on Thursday, May 7, 2020, in historic Hangar 7 located at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. The dinner, which will pay tribute to WWII veterans, will feature combat heroes sharing their personal stories of experiences.
The Arsenal of Democracy Executive Planning Committee includes Pete Bunce, President and CEO of the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA); Hank Coates, President and CEO of the CAF; John Cudahy, President of the International Council of Air Shows (ICAS); Mike Ginter, Vice President of Airports and State Advocacy with the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA); and Paul Rinaldi, President of the National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA).
More information about the Arsenal of Democracy Flyover is available at www.ww2flyover.org. The Arsenal of Democracy Flyover is a 501(c)3 entity.
The aircraft listed have agreed to participate in the flyover, but due to factors such as weather and mechanical issues, participating aircraft are subject to change without notice.