Ouch. I rode in a Confederate Air Force B-25 at an air show once. Hopefully there were no passengers on this one.
#3 | Posted by REDIAL
A friend's dad was a pilot who flew B-17's out of England during WWII. He'd attend all the reunions.
Several years ago, as my friend who was there told me, he shed a couple of silent tears when he crawled inside a restored B-17 in England and took a short ride at 90 years old. Brought back a lot of memories.
Nazi's would take shots at them as they were on their glide path over the English channel moving slowly. One night, his plane took fire and did his best landing on the water about a mile offshore. Though there were injuries, he and all of his crew survived and bobbed in the water for some time.
When they saw a light coming towards them, they assumed it was a NAZI sub come to finish them off. Instead, they happily discovered it was a couple of Brits who'd rowed a boat out to them.
When it arrived, my friend's dad told everyone else to get in first. His flak jacket was waterlogged and he was so weak he couldn't climb in the boat. One of the gents who rowed out grabbed his jacket and held him as they rowed the mile or so back to the beach, saving his life.
At that convention where he took a ride in the B-17, an elderly man approached him, saw his name tag, and said, "you may not remember me, but I remember you.
It was the man who'd held onto his jacket and saved the B-17's crew as well as his own life. Both of them in their 90's at the time.