Flying History Lands in Salisbury - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Flying History Lands in Salisbury

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SALISBURY, Md. - A flying piece of history landed in Salisbury on Monday morning and will call the airport home for the next week.  A B-17 bomber, part of the Commemorative Air Force, landed in Salisbury and is open to tours and even flights for visitors.

The plane is nearly 70 years old and a quick step inside of the cabin and you will quickly realize that it is nothing like the aircraft in the skies today.

"This aircraft's mission typically went to 25 to 30 thousand feet.  It would be 50 degrees below zero inside the airplane.  Airplane is not pressurized, not heated.  You'll also find out how tight it was inside.  We like to tell people it was built for your freedom and not your comfort," said Russ Gilmore, the pilot of the B-17.

The plane, known as "Sentimental Journey," has low ceilings and very narrow walkways.  It has been restored to replicate as much as possible from the day it was originally built in 1944 so visitors get as close to authentic as possible.

"We built this thing so that it gave the public the best look at what a B-17 looks like, or looked like, in World War II.  So, we put a lot of work into this, there's a lot of things we don't have on it but the public can't see that," said Jay Gates, the plane's co-pilot.

The plane flew mainly in the Pacific during the war, mainly to map out areas and assist in search and rescue missions.  Anyone who steps inside for a tour will see the replicated side guns and turrets, bombs inside the bomb bay, and what it was like to be a pilot of a B-17.  And speaking of the pilots, those who fly the plane these days said they wouldn't trade it for anything.

"It's an honor to be able to do it.  It's my way to pay back the veterans.  And we never want to forget the younger folks in the community who may not have heard of WWII, so this is our chance and rather than just see a movie on TV, this is the real thing," Gilmore said.

A tour of the B-17 will cost $5 while a flight is going to run you $425.  People can visit the plane until Saturday.

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