Many would say “Doolittle’s Raid” is one of the brighter moments in American military history. It was the U.S. response to Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor.
You might remember the dramatic retelling of this historic operation in the feature film Pearl Harbor.
As you can see in that video, part of what made this WW2 air raid so unprecedented was the engineering it took to get such big heavy bombers (B-25’s) safely off of an aircraft carrier.
Typically a big plane like that required a longer runway to get airborne.
Of course, the other part of the story is how bold an operation it was. At the time, the U.S. did not have forward bases close enough to allow an attack on Japan.
So a small U.S. Navy task force was sent out toward the Japanese mainland with the mission to drop bombs on Tokyo and strike fear into the heart of the enemy.
Compared to the calamitous Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, it was a small feat, but it was a bold statement at the same time. “We’re still here”.
Fast forward to today.
We’re learned the last surviving member of Doolittle’s Raid is coming to the Oregon International Air Show.
103-year-old Lt. Col Richard “Dick” Cole will appear at this year’s show as part of a “Salute to Doolittle’s Raiders.” Lt. Col. Cole was the co-pilot for Jimmy Doolittle during the April, 1942 raid.
The B-25 Mitchell “Grumpy” will fly a demonstration including a tribute pass and