Three historic WWII aircraft are on display in Nebraska through Sunday. The Collings Foundation’s Wings of Freedom Tour is in Lincoln at Silver Hawk Aviation through Friday morning and then will fly to Omaha’s TAC Air. Volunteer Tour Coordinator Michael Dober says the public will have the opportunity to see a P51 Mustang, a B-17 Flying Fortress and a B-24 Liberator.
Dober says, “The B-24, there were 18,500 made and this is the last fully restored. This B-24, you could put basically put live ammo bombs on it and it would be mission ready.” The P-51 Mustang is the world’s only duel controlled aircraft. Dober says, “There are only the pilot and one person behind him. It was the premier fighter of WWII and a very unique aircraft. If you hear that you will remember that sound for the rest of your life.”
Dober says this is a rare living history experience. He says, “I’ve had Air Force gentlemen come in that fly the new jet planes and went on a ride. I asked them if they got any “stick-time” and the two guys looked at me in horror. They said no, that is all stick and rudder and we wouldn’t have any idea on how to fly these things.”
Dober says donations are what keep these planes up in the air and on tour. Walk through tours are $12 for adults and $6 for children 12 and younger. Rides are also available on the B-17 and the B-24 and are $450 for a half-hour. The P-51 is a two-seater and rides are also available. Dober says the passenger will actually get “stick-time” and fly the plane. A half hour flight is $2,200 and an hour $3,200 for a full hour. The majority of your flight is a tax deductible donation.