More information about the 17th Bomb Group and the 1941 War Maneuvers. Any other information about other groups, squadrons, or stories about the 1941 "War Maneuvers" are wanted as well. If you have any information, please email the webmaster at: email@example.com
25 June 2010
Doolittleraid.com regrets to inform you that another Doolittle Raider, Lt. Col. Frank A. Kappeler, passed away this Wednesday in California. This leaves seven surviving Raiders.
20 June 2010
Join the official Doolittle Raiders Facebook fan club here:
19 August 2009
Doolittleraid.com was saddened to hear that navigator Bert Hartzell, who trained with the Doolittle Raiders and was one of the men who went on the USS Hornet as a spare passed away yesterday at his home in Santa Clara, California.
28 November 08
Doolittleraid.com has just learned of the passing of Doolittle Raider Ed Horton.
25 November 08
Doolittleraid.com has just learned of the passing of Doolittle Raider Maj. Gen. Davey Jones.
12 June 08
The US Submarine Veterans of Tacoma, Washington hosted Edward Saylor, the Engineer and Chief Mechanic on plane #15 in the Doolittle raid as their guest speaker on June 12th. Click here for their website: http://southsoundbase.subvets.com/
29 May 08
This weekend the Doolittle Raiders are in Florida to take part in a reenactment of the B-25's short-takeoff practice before the Raid. More information can be found at the links below:
17 Mar 08
We regret to inform the reader that we just learned of the passing of Doolittle Raider, POW survivor, Christian, missionary, and friend, Jacob DeShazer.
29 Jan 08
According to the latest research peformed by DoolittleRaid.com we believe we have a new, more accurate (ie. not perfect) profile interpretation of the 16th B-25 flown by Lt. William Farrow.
29 Jan 08
The 66th anniversary reunion will be held in Dallas, April 16-20th. More information can be found at: http://www.flightmuseum.com/doolittle.htm
10/08/07 News Item
COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - There is sad news about the last surviving member of the Doolittle Raiders in South Carolina. Nolan Herndon has passed away.
Herndon became a hero in many people's eyes for being one of the first Americans to bomb Japan back in April of 1942.
WIS spoke with Herndon at Owens Field on Veteran's Day in 2000. The Edgefield native said he clung to his faith during the dangerous raids.
"I think I wore out the 23rd Psalm flying in those three hours. I just kept going over and over it."
Herndon's family tells WIS News 10 he died Sunday morning.
He was 88 years old.
His funeral will be held Wednesday at 2pm at Edgefield United Methodist Church. Viewing will be held from 1pm-2pm at the church.
3/26/07 News Item
Doolittle Raider Chase Nielsen has passed away, leaving 14 surviving Doolittle Raiders.
Funeral arrangements are noted here: http://www.doolittleraider.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=521
3/22/07 News Item
Apparently, Doolittle Raider and former POW Chase Nielsen is not well at this time and may not be with us much longer. More information is available at:
It is with sadness that we note the passing of Doolittle Raider William L. Birch. Mr. Birch was born in Calexico, California on September 7, 1917 and graduated from Kern County High School in 1935. He joined the United States Army Air Force in September 1939, trained as a bombardier, and by 1942 was a Staff Sergeant in the 34th Bomb Squadron. When the squadron was asked, Mr. Birch was among those who volunteered for the Tokyo Raid. He took part in the Raid as the bombardier of the #11 aircraft flown by Capt. Ross Greening. Their aircraft made a bomb run on an oil refinery and attacked a patrol boat headed out of Tokyo Bay to the China Sea. The crew bailed out at night over China and were assisted by Chinese villagers. After the raid Birch went through pilot training, received his wings and commission as an officer in June 1943, and flew B-24s. He left the Air Force in 1945 and was married in 1947. He worked with his father in his butcher shop and did machinist work until becoming a commercial helicopter instructor in 1964. In the late '60s he was forced to retire as a result of a crash which broke his back.
"Of all the accolades that our group has received over the years, the one I treasure most is in the statement made by Admiral William F Bull Halsey at the time, ""In my opinion, their flight was one of the most courageous deeds in military history."" - "I felt proud that I had met the enemy and prevailed. In some small way our group had helped avenge that infamous Sunday, Dec 7 1941. I was certain that our group had paved the way and our America would rise like the Phoenix from the ashes of defeat and despair and ultimately gain victory over the oppressors of the world".
There are now 15 Doolittle Raiders living, a remarkable number considering that the Raid took place almost 65 years ago, a fact for which we are truly grateful as we approach Thanksgiving Day here in the United States.
It's time to release the promised picture!
First, please read this:
Many people have asked why the Raid took place and if it did any significant damage at all.
From the early planning stages of the operation, the planners of the Doolittle Raid understood their limited possibilities due to the small number of planes involved. The mission was viewed as a morale-booster for American forces as well as a hoped-for surprise attack and symbolic show of strength, showing our will to fight back, and a hopeful portent of what the Japanese could expect in the future. That understood, the crews were assigned to military-related targets in the hopes of causing real damage.
Our information on targets in Japan at the time was actually fairly good thanks to the excellent work done by Lt. Cmdr. Steven Jurika during his time as the assistant naval attaché at the American Embassy in Tokyo from 1939-1941. From his work, a list of military and industrial targets such as aircraft factories, naval targets, metal industries, and the oil industry, had been selected in the cities of Tokyo, Osaka, Kobe, Nagoya, Yokahama, and several other major Japanese cities. 
During the voyage on the USS Hornet, each crew was allowed to pick their target city targets. And was then given a folder of target data for use on their mission. 
After all sixteen bombers successfully launched from the Hornet, the crew of the thirteenth aircraft proceeded on course to their targets along with the other fifteen bombers. From the after-action reports it is known that fifteen of the aircraft successfully dropped their bombs. 
Apart from a few photos published in Destination: Tokyo by Stan Cohen  and a few other places, very little is known about actual damage done to the various targets, although damage was certainly done. The initial Japanese reports on the damage were rather exaggerated and inaccurate. Later reports were more reasonable but still somewhat cryptic and possibly slanted to prevent embarrassment. For sure, there was a tight secrecy after the attack throughout Japan. 
McElroy's crew definitely did some damage. The following is an excerpt from page 126 of Col. C. V. Glines' (Ret.) excellent book The Doolittle Raid:"McElroy had no difficulty getting off, although Williams said, "Like all the rest, I was very scared and prayed that we would make it." Following Greening and Bower, McElroy flew about 250 feet above the water. As they neared the Japanese coast, Campbell estimated they were about one hundred miles too far north of Tokyo. McElroy immediately racked the B-25 into a left turn and paralleled the coast southward as Campbell suggested. Dick Knoblock noted, "The navigators in the other two planes must not have come to the same conclusion, although all three of us had the same target. Greening's ship turned right, while Bower continued straight ahead."
6/12/04 - Update!According to researchers on the www.J-aircraft.com ships message board thread http://www.j-aircraft.org/bbs/jship_config.pl?read=33059, the Ryuho was probably in drydock number 5. Here's a link to a thread with a map and some further references: http://www.j-aircraft.org/bbs/jship_config.pl?read=33134References: The Doolittle Raid by Col. C. V. Glines (Ret.) Pgs. 23-27
Special Thanks to David Aiken for sharing this photo and doing lots of research.
6/29/2004 (News Item):The Doolittle Raiders official website currently has a petition listed for a stamp honoring Gen. Jimmy Doolittle. Col. C. V. Glines is spearheading this effort to honor Gen. Doolittle for his many accomplishments and contributions to aviation. Follow the link below to sign it.
1/19/2004 (News Item):
Excerpted from the Joplin Globe:
Col. Travis Hoover, age 86, Joplin, Mo., passed away Saturday, Jan. 17, 2004 at the Webb City (Mo.) Health and Rehabilitation Center. Col. Hoover was born Sept. 21, 1917 at Melrose, N.M. and was the son of the late Fred and Elizabeth Hoover. Col. Hoover was a pilot of the second (of only 16) Army Air Corps B-25 bombers to take off from the aircraft carrier USS Hornet on the Doolittle Tokyo Raid of April 18, 1942.Col. Hoover was taken to San Antonio, Texas and buried with full military honors next to his wife at Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery.
[Picture Caption] The picture to the left was taken at the burial service at Fort Sam Houston. Fellow Raider Richard Cole was speaking to the reporters about Col. Hoover.
DoolittleRaid.com was recently alerted to a B-25B airframe that is still in existence. According to sources involved with the airframe the serial number is 40-2347. If this is true, it would be the aircraft that came off of the North American Aviation assembly line just 3 aircraft after Doolittle's plane 40-2344! The aircraft is currently owned by Aero Trader in California. A company that has specialized in B-25 restorations around the country. It would be really neat to see this bird flying in Doolittle Raider markings someday on the airshow circuit. Anyone want to take up the challenge? I can assure you that if someone would, this website would give you all the assistance we can.
Below are some pictures of the B-25:
The owners' website is at www.aerotrader.net
This is a picture that was taken by a member of a Russian air force unit located at the field where Capt. York's aircraft landed. It was apparently taken on April 19th directly after the raid. Note the top turret cover in place and the heavy exhaust stains from the long flight. Also the .30 caliber machine gun stowed in the nose section. This picture also has the "3" marking on the nose of the aircraft. The picture was sent by Mr.Vladimir Plotnikov of Vladivostok. His website is located at www.vntc.ruBelow is an unedited portion of the text he sent with the picture. It was apparently translated from Russian, so please don't pick on the spelling or slightly tedious grammar."Some years back I would be engaged in search of the plane ? 40-2242 which in 18.04.1942 years has made landing in Russia. It was the plane of the captain of York. I managed to find people which met crew of the plane after his heroic road. On present time Boris Nazarov, the aircraft mechanic 39 fighter airshelf of Pacific Fleet (air station Unashi) which the first has met crew of the plane after his landing is alive and healthy. After sending crew of York to Khabarovsk and further (about adventures of crew in Russia co-pilot Robert Emmens in the book " Ghost of the Kremlin " has written) the plane - B-25b ? 40-2242 has remained in Russia. First it simply hid from extraneous supervision, and since 1944 on it flied in aircraft of Pacific Fleet. The plane carried out prospecting flights. Last time the plane flied an autumn of 1949 from air station Novorossija (Primorski Krai). By the end of 1950 the plane was disassembled and prekratid the existence. Probably, in Russia at that time nobody knew a historical value of the plane ? 40-2242. In 1999-2001 years to Russia there came my good friend from USA - aviation historian Walter Kurilchuk. It too was engaged in search of this plane. After trips to Russia it has written the book "Chasing Ghosts""
Mr. Plotnikov mentioned the book Chasing Ghosts. I have not seen this book yet, but will be watching for it. -webmaster
Update: I think that I may have located this book, but have not been able to get a copy of it yet. There is a reference to it on the website at: http://www.aeronautics.ru/archive/linktrack/russian_aviation_books_links.htm There is also some more information on the picture on Todd Joyce's Doolittle Raider forum at www.doolittleraider.com/forum/index.php
Another picture apparently taken at the same time can be viewed on the web at http://www.lodinet.com/rruss/midway/temp/eb_b25.jpg. According to the source that found the link, the photograph is apparently from KGB files in Moscow, Russia.
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