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Yankee Air Force supports the Warbirds Over Port Clinton Featured

Yankee Lady, photo by the Erie-Ottawa International Airport Authority.

Yankee Lady, the pristine World War II Boeing B-17G heavy bomber and Yankee Warrior, the combat veteran B-25D Mitchell medium bomber, will be flying into Erie-Ottawa International Airport supporting the Warbirds Over Port Clinton air show.   The radio controlled air show opens Saturday morning August 23 at 9 a.m. and the B-25 Yankee Warrior will arrive shortly thereafter.  The four-engine Flying Fortress will arrive on Sunday morning helping open the second day. Both planes are based at Willow Run Airport in Ypsilanti Michigan.  The B-25 will be available for Flight Experience (FLEX) rides on Saturday and the B-17 will offer rides on Sunday. 

“We’re really excited to have the Yankee Air Museum’s two bombers as part of our lineup,” exclaimed Brian Dee, Event Director. “These aircraft are living history of the same era many of our enthusiasts honor with their model aircraft.  It’s important to us.  And the fact that Yankee Lady and Yankee Warrior offer FLEX rides puts an exclamation point on it.”

Dee said Yankee Warrior is the same type of aircraft as Georgie’s Gal, pride of the Liberty Aviation Museum at the event site.  These medium bombers saw action in every theater of the war and performed low level bombing and strafing attacks.  B-25s were the aircraft used in the first strike back at Japan by the famed Doolittle Raiders.   

 Dee explained the significance of the B-17 was its mission to bomb strategic targets in daylight precision raids.  Some airstrikes would have up to 1000 planes flying in waves over enemy industrial targets. This campaign, he says, crippled the enemy’s ability to make war and helped liberate Europe.  

“We’re working hard to build Warbirds Over Port Clinton by bringing in premium vendors, a new pilot swap shop, these full scale WWII aircraft and more” continued Dee.   “This appearance by Yankee Lady and Yankee Warrior will keep interest high and eyes skyward reminding people of the importance of aviation in our culture.”

“Our crews appreciate the radio controlled pilots and their craft,” said Norm Ellickson, B-17 Crew Chief.   “We like looking at the details of their planes every bit as much as they like the checking out our planes.”

Ellickson said the Yankee Air Museum is a proud participant at this air show.  He added the Museum is always pleased to offer an advanced sensory study of World War II aviation saying the sights, sounds, smells and feelings on board a B-17 or B-25 FLEX ride are unparalleled, providing an inkling of what WWII airmen endured.  

The North American B-25 Mitchell Yankee Warrior will arrive at about 9 a.m. on Saturday, August 23 at Erie-Ottawa International Airport.  FLEX rides will be offered throughout the day, however the operating costs of such an airplane dictate there must be at least 5 paid riders per flight.

A FLEX ride is a 45-minute experience with approximately 30 minutes of actual flight time and costs $425 in the B-25.  People interested in taking a ride may reserve a seat by calling Jerry Lester at 517-404-1061.  The Yankee Warrior will be in Port Clinton on Saturday only.

The Flying Fortress Yankee Lady will arrive in Port Clinton on Sunday, August 24 at 9 a.m.  A FLEX ride in the B-17 costs $450 and operating costs of this plane dictate there must be at least 6 paid riders per flight.

“We always look forward to visiting the Liberty Aviation Museum and this RC Warbirds Over Port Clinton is a great attraction,” said Dave Wright, FLEX Ride Coordinator.  “We have a number of B-17 flights fully booked on Sunday afternoon, but we have seats available for flights we would add earlier in the day.  People should come out to the airport early, check in with us and enjoy the festivities.”

To order a B-17 FLEX ride or to obtain a gift certificate, call Dave Wright at 734-483-4030, extension 236. Donations are tax deductible within the limits of the law and will directly support the B-17 & B-25.

For more information on the RC Warbirds Over Port Clinton, visit the rcwarbirdsopc.com website. 

Established in 1981, the Yankee Air Museum is a non-profit 501 (c) (3) organization.  For more information about YAM visit the yankeeairmuseum.org website.

For a 90 second video glimpse into a FLEX Ride aboard our aircraft visit: youtube.com/watch?v=1rkfBZgPnQI

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