(Addison, Texas) The Commemorative Air Force (CAF) famous Boeing B-29 Superfortress bomber, FIFI — the only remaining flying example of the aircraft in the world – will be the feature World War II airplane in an eleven stop tour starting February 22 at El Paso International Airport in Texas. The CAF AirPower History Tour continues through April 4 and will feature a different combination of CAF historic warbirds at each of the stops in Arizona, California, Nevada and New Mexico.
Other historic aircraft from the Commemorative Air Force joining FIFI at different tour stops include the B-17 Flying Fortress, Sentimental Journey; B-25 Mitchell, Maid in the Shade; P-51 Mustang, Man O War; C-45 Expeditor, Bucket of Bolts; and other World War II fighters and trainers. An authentic Japanese Zero and British Spitfire, two ultra-rare fighters, will be joining the tour in southern California.
Events are open to the public and will allow attendees to get up close to these famous military aircraft. Cockpit tours of the B-29 and others will be available when the aircraft are not in motion. There will be opportunities for attendees to purchase a ride in many of the airplanes at all of the stops. Ride reservations are recommended. Visit www.AirPowerTour.org <http://www.airpowertour.org/> for more information about the tour schedule and to make ride reservations.
The tour stops include:
- February 22-24 El Paso International Airport, El Paso, Texas
- February 24-27 Tucson International Airport, Tucson, Arizona
- March 1-3 Mesa Gateway Airport, Mesa, Arizona
- March 5-7 Deer Valley Airport, Phoenix, Arizona
- March 9-10 Marine Corp Air Station, Yuma, Arizona
- March 14-15 Brown Field Municipal Airport, San Diego, California
- March 15-17 Palm Springs Air Museum, Palm Springs, California
- March 19-20 Camarillo Airport, Camarillo, California
- March 21-24 Burbank Airport, Burbank, California
- March 27-31 Henderson Executive Airport, Las Vegas, Nevada
- April 2-4 Albuquerque International Sunport Airport, Albuquerque, New Mexico
The mission of the Commemorative Air Force is to honor the men and women who built, maintained and flew in these airplanes during World War II. The organization believes that mission is best accomplished by maintaining the airplanes in flying condition; taking the airplanes to the people allowing them to experience the sight and sound of the aircraft in flight.
About the CAF’s B-29 Superfortress, FIFI:
The Boeing B-29 Superfortress, first flown in 1942 and began active service in 1944, is perhaps best known as the aircraft whose missions over Japan helped bring about the end of World War II. It was designed as a replacement for the older B-17s and B-24s, with longer range and greater bomb loads. The B-29 was also used in the Korean War in the early 1950s and was a staple of the U.S. Air Force until the late 1950s.
FIFI was acquired by the CAF in the early 1970s when a group of CAF members found her at the U.S. Navy Proving Ground at China Lake, California where she was being used as a missile target. The airplane was rescued and restored and flew for over thirty years until 2006 when the chief pilot made the decision to ground her pending a complete power plant re-fit. What followed was an extensive four year restoration that included replacing all four engines with new custom built hybrid engines. FIFI returned to the sky in 2010 and since that time has traveled coast to coast attracting large crowds at every tour stop. Learn more about FIFI and her tour schedule at www.cafb29b24.org <http://www.cafb29b24.org/> .
About the Commemorative Air Force:
Collecting, restoring and flying vintage historical aircraft for more than half a century, the Commemorative Air Force ranks as one of the largest private air forces in the world. The CAF is dedicated to Honoring American Military Aviation through flight, exhibition and remembrance. A non-profit educational association, the CAF has more than 8,000 members and a fleet of 153 airplanes distributed throughout the country to 70 units located in 27 states for care and operation. For more information, visit www.commemorativeairforce.org.