WATERLOO, Iowa (KWWL) – Once masters of the skies, a number of vintage aircraft landed in Waterloo this week. While the planes have long since retired, their value to history is priceless.
“We try our best to keep these planes flying and we do it 300 days nonstop,” said Demi Bamber, the flight coordinator for the Wings of Freedom Tour, a group that maintains historic World War II planes to help educate the public.
KWWL got an exclusive look inside one of the flying tours.
The one shown above is the B-17 Flying Fortress. It received it’s name for its heavy artillery.
Bamber says while many people are curious about the history of the aircraft, they’re also curious about their own history.
“A lot of people are curious about history within their own families because people came back from the war and never talked about it,” said Bamber.
Bamber said being in the air offers a first-hand experience as to what airmen felt in World War II.
“It grabs them cause they’re smelling the airplane, they’re hearing the engines rumble, they’re feeling the wind. It’s something you can’t get out of book, but it makes you want to jump back into one,” said Bamber.
The tour will be at Livingston Aviation in Waterloo until Thursday, July 25th. A ground tour inside costs $15. A flight tour costs $450.
The tour is part of a nonprofit, so all the proceeds go towards maintaining the historic planes.
More information about the tour and it’s parent foundation can be found here.