About a week and a half ago, I was driving home from work, and way off in the distance, barely bigger than a speck, I saw something I could only describe as a B-17 bomber. For the unaware, the B-17 was possibly the most important piece of hardware in World War 2. There will be dissenters of course, but that’s my opinion. It’s a 4 engine bomber, called the Flying Fortress, bristling with machine guns. Some might say they’re ugly, but to those who appreciate fine flying machines, it’s a thing of beauty.
But there are only a few flying B-17’s around, what are the chances I’d see one north of Grand Rapids?
A few days later, I was walking on campus, and I saw it again, closer, but still far away. Nearby were the two radio engineers from WCSG, and I asked them. They thought it looked an awful lot like it, but we still couldn’t be positive.
This morning on the way to church it flew over the road at about 5000 feet, unmistakable as a B-17. What a thrill.
But the big finale? Today while working on the lawn, I heard a deep throated rumble, like a Harley in the sky. I looked up, and there it was, about 2500 feet, doing about 170 knots. Nice and slow, low enough that I could almost make out the nose art.
I never thought I’d see a flying B-17, I just don’t go to enough air shows, especially ones that specialize in old aircraft. There are 44 flying B-17’s in the world.
For a fascinating story about recovering more buried in ice in Greenland check out this article from Answers in Genesis. I’m astounded that all I could really find on it was on Creation Science sites, as opposed to some aviation geek site. I read what AiG has, and it fits everything I’ve ever read about the expedition.
Update: Google tells me that B17.org lists the fact that the B-17 Fuddy Duddy was in town from August 13-15, and was selling rides. *sigh*