Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Bob Dorr talks about B-29 raids

Bob Dorr met B-29 crewman John Swoboda after the meeting.

Bob Dorr, well known aviation author, visited the Museum February 4 to talk about the 1945 raids on  Japan covered in his new book, Mission to Tokyo. Bob set the stage by giving some background on the B-29 Superfortresses used in the latter stages of World War II and the war in the Pacific.

He focused his  talk on the firebombing of Tokyo the night of March 9-10 and the use later that year of the two atomic bombs. In dramatic fashion, he tried to recreate what is was like to be there 70 years ago on Tinian in the Mariana Islands as the B-29 crews prepared for their missions. He also reminded the audience that many B-29s, and specifically the plane that dropped the first atomic bomb, the Enola Gay, were built in a Martin Company plant.

In the audience was John Hamilton Swoboda, a B-29 gunner who was on Tinian during the time covered in the book and talk. They compared notes briefly.

Bob's appearance was part of the monthly Monday Speaker Series presented by the Museum at the  Lockheed Martin auditorium, 2323 Eastern Blvd., Middle River. The 7 PM events are free to the public, but you must have a photo ID.  Children must be accompanied by an adult with a photo ID.

The March speaker will be Ron Ball, who will talk about the video he compiled on the history of the Maryland Air National Guard.

A look at history

Docent Bill Haugen explains the special tiles on the shuttle. A busload of aviation enthusiasts enjoyed the day November 8 at the Smiths...