In 2010, the U.S. Congress voted unanimously in favor of observing a National Spirit of ’45 Day on the second Sundayof every August, coinciding with the anniversary of August 11, 1945, the historic day when President Harry S. Truman announced that World War II was over. This was a significant shot in the arm for the folks who founded “Keep the Spirit of ’45 Alive!” It is a nationwide, grassroots, nonprofit initiative to establish an annual day to honor the achievements of what is often referred to as America’s ‘greatest generation’ so that their example of courage, self-sacrifice, service and national unity will forever inspire future generations of Americans – especially our youth.
This year the Commemorative Air Force has signed up to be a partner with Spirit of ’45 for the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, which will be commemorated by participating in a nationwideflyover of WWII aircraft in communities throughout America from Friday, Aug. 14 thru Sunday, Aug. 16. The goal of the mass-flyover is to pay tribute to the crucial role American airpower played during WWII and to remind the public of the importance of preserving the last remaining airplanes of the era so they can continue to educate and inspire future generations.
“I want CAF Units participating to frame the celebration with a focus on education; it is central to the CAF’s mission and many segments of our country need to learn, or need to be reminded, about the great sacrifices which have paid for our freedom in America and in many places around the world.” Said Bob Stenevik, CAF’s Vice President of Safety, Maintenance and Operations.
As the summer approached the Spirit of 45 will be updating its website with the many participating organizations and events that will occur thought the United States. Those wanting to participate or learn more are encouraged to visit the organization’s website http://www.spiritof45.org/
Here are some of the CAF Events
CAF Mississippi Wing
The Mississippi Wing has partnered with the City of Madison, Faith Indeed Foundation of Madison, Ridgecrest Baptist Church of Madison and numerous pilots throughout the state to conduct an Honor Service on Aug.14-15. The Faith Indeed Foundation will provide a variety show on the evening of the 14th with a "Hall of Heroes" comprised of local Veterans.
On Aug. 15, the Misssissippi Wing will conduct a dawn patrol with at least one P-51, four T-6s, four Navions, two Stearmans and a PT-26. A memorial service for World War II Veterans and a missing man formation. That afternoon a seminar about the SR-71 with CAF Col Don Emmons and Mr. Rich Graham.
CAF ARIZONA Airbase