Arsenal of Democracy Flyover
On May 8, 2015, the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE) Day, a diverse array of World War II aircraft flew over the skies of Washington, D.C., to honor the heroes who fought in World War II and those at home who produced the tanks, ships, and aircraft that enabled the United States and its Allies to achieve victory.
The flyover took place just after noon, so I was able to attend merely by running across the street to watch during my lunch break. I was able to get out on the west front terrace of the Capitol. There was quite a crowd.
The aircraft flew in 15 historically sequenced formations. Each formation represented a major battle of the War. Here are some of my favorites. (Click on the photos for more information.)
The following two photos are of North American AT-6/SNJs flying in the first formation, the "Trainer" formation. I've seen a lot of these in movies about World War II.
The second formation, the "Pearl Harbor" formation, included Curtiss P-40 Warhawks. These are the "Flying Tigers"! As a kid, I loved the tiger mouths that were painted on the noses of the fighters.
I'm particularly fond of the following photo and the one at the start of this post. (These are from the thirteenth "Iwo Jima" formation). The Corsairs are very fast airplanes and I was afraid the photos wouldn't turn out.
The following airplane is enormous. The Boeing B-29 Superfortress (in the fourteenth "Final Air Offensive" formation) is the same kind of airplane that dropped the nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945.
Keywords: Arsenal of Democracy Flyover, Washington, World War II, aircraft, airplanes, bomber, corsair, fighter, flying foretress, flying tiger, historic, superfortress