75 years ago…30 Seconds Over Tokyo,
April 18, 1942 The Doolittle Raid on Tokyo and other military targets in Japan. 101 yr old Richard Cole is the last surviving member of the Raiders.
That raid had far reaching strategic implications. The Japanese were forced to go for Guadalcanal and Midway to reach further out from the home islands. These two fights broke the back of the Imperial Navy and their carrier capabilities. God bless those guys.
From an Air Force Association post yesterday. Great men, even greater Americans!
Today, April 18th, marks the 75th anniversary of the Doolittle Raid. Sixteen B-25B Mitchell bombers, led by Lt. Col. James H. “Jimmy” Doolittle, took off from the USS Hornet in the early morning daylight on an assignment to strike the heart of Tokyo just five months after the devastating attack on Pearl Harbor. Although the raid inflicted a rather minor level of physical damage on Japan, it gave a much-need boost to morale in the U.S. and to the warfighters.
Eighty men volunteered and participated in the raid, and all but three crew members initially survived the mission. Eight airmen were captured by the Japanese in China, and three were later executed. Fourteen full crews, except for one crewman who was killed in action, returned either to the United States or to American forces.
The raid played a major role in developing America’s perception of airpower and aviation. But it will also be remembered for its daring, and for the courage of the crewmembers who volunteered to risk their lives for the country they loved.
The dangerous raid earned Doolittle the Medal of Honor and all of the other Raiders the Distinguished Flying Cross.
Each year we have an opportunity to remember and celebrate the achievements of Jimmy Doolittle and the Raiders so that they are long remembered.
Today, at the National Museum of the US Air Force, retired Lt. Col. Richard Cole, Doolittle’s co-pilot and sole surviving Doolittle Raider, will conduct the traditional “Goblet Ceremony” honoring those Raiders who died the previous year by overturning the Goblet belonging to retired SSgt. David Thatcher.
On Thursday, 20 April, in Washington, D.C. our Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies will host Lt. Col. Cole at the first annual Airpower Heritage dinner honoring a legend in Air Force history.
Last fall at our Air, Space & Cyber Conference, the Air Force named their newest bomber the B-21 Raider. Dick Cole, who is now the last remaining Raider, honored his colleagues by announcing the name of the newest bomber.
Our AFA Headquarters building is named the Doolittle Building because of the legacy of Doolittle and his Raiders.
AFA salutes the Raiders and their historic mission and will continue to preserve their legacy by highlighting the dominance of Airpower.
Larry O. Spencer
My Dad was in the US Navy when this raid was done. He was at NAS Alameda and watched them load the B-25 Mitchel bombers with craine's on to the USS Hornet from the pier. They use to transport bomber aircraft overseas that way so they did not give it a second thought little did they know they saw history that day. In San Lorenzo not far from what use to be NAS Alameda is Doolittle Dr. most who drive on that street don't even know who it was name after kind of sad. My Dad flew off the second USS Hornet the one used in the raid later got sunk during the war and they gave the name to a second carrier. Any one live n the bay area the USS Hornet now a museum worth seeing use to go to it once in a while when I lived in the bay area.
Check out this old news reel about the raid
Last edited by river rat; 04-20-2017 at 19:14.