Seeking WWII Aviators

Coconut Telegraph

In honor of its 50th Anniversary, the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Chapter 180 in Sarasota is hosting a Round-Engine Aircraft Ride Event (RARE) February 5 through 8, 2015 at the Sarasota Bradenton International Airport (SRQ) from 9am to 5pm.  Prior to the RARE event, they will be hosting a WWII Aviators’ Roundtable on February 4, in the Sudakoff Auditorium at New College of Florida at 7pm. They are seeking local WWII aviators to participate in the panel discussion. The event is free to the general public. “Not too many people know that SRQ was originally built as one of eight US Air Force auxiliary training facilities during WWII. With the visit of the EAA Boeing B-17, the Aluminum Overcast, we thought it would be a great time to gather several aviators to tell their stories,” said Martin Sobel, EAA180’s Education Coordinator. “We hope to secure five to ten WWII aviators, including members of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPs) to participate in the discussion. Unfortunately, we are losing more and more of the ‘Greatest Generation’ so we need to record their stories and preserve their historic contributions to the war effort and to the United States.”The panel discussion will be recorded as part of the EAA Timeless Voices Project and the conclusion of the evening will feature a video about the B-17 crew of Patty Jo produced by Craig Ruiz, grandson of one of the crewmembers. If you are a WWII aviator or know any of these heroes, please contact Martin Sobel, Captain TWA (Ret) at 941-539-4806.

The Experimental Aircraft Association

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