Enola Gay - The crew and the B29 Superfortress bomber that dropped the first atomic bomb in Hiroshima.
Latest hand-picked WWII news.
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Theodore Van Kirk, last surviving member of Enola Gay crew, dies at 93
The lone remaining crewman of the Enola Gay — which dropped the first atomic bomb on Japan near the end of WWII — has died in Georgia. Twenty-four years old at the time, Van Kirk was the navigator on the Enola Gay, a B-29 Superfortress. The plane dropped `Little Boy` on Hiroshima at 8:15 a.m. August 6, 1945, killing 140,000 people.
Morris Jeppson - Weapons specialist who armed the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima
Morris "Dick" Jeppson, a weapons specialist who was mid-flight when he finished arming the first atomic bomb, which the Enola Gay B-29 Superfortress dropped on Hiroshima in World War II, has passed away at 87. The historic combat mission on Aug. 6, 1945, was the only one he ever flew. Worried about his family`s safety, Jeppson remained silent for decades about his role in the historic attack. Navigator Theodore Van Kirk, the only surviving member of the 12-man Enola Gay crew, told that Jeppson was "quiet, efficient and businesslike" during the mission. "He wasn`t the type of guy to blow his own horn."
Praised WW2 book bites the dust: "The Last Train from Hiroshima" based on made up stories
A book about the atomic destruction of Hiroshima won praise with its portrayals of the bomb`s survivors and was set to be made into a WWII movie. "The Last Train from Hiroshima" also claimed to reveal a secret accident with the atom bomb that killed one American and reduced the weapon`s effectiveness. That section of the book and other technical details of the mission are based on the stories of Joseph Fuoco - a last-minute substitute on one of the two observation planes that escorted the Enola Gay. There is just one hiccup: Fuoco was not on that mission, state the two living members of the crew.
Theodore Van Kirk, lone Enola Gay survivor, remembers Hiroshima
Theodore "Dutch" Van Kirk never forgotten his last WWII bombing mission. He was the navigator for the crew of the Enola Gay, the B-29 Superfortress Bomber led by Paul Tibbets Jr. that delivered an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan, on Aug. 6, 1945. Now, Van Kirk, the last living member of the 12-man crew that flew to Hiroshima, lectures to veterans groups, high schools, and civic clubs. "I probably speak 3-4 times a month now. I went to a high school not long ago and asked the students if they knew anything about World War II. One boy waved his hand and said: `I do, I do. That`s when we and the Germans fought the Russians.` The kids today don`t know the history."
Atomic Bomb history: Enola Gay`s hangar falling apart
The aging hangar on the edge of the Bonneville Salt Flats once housed Enola Gay, the famous B-29 bomber that delivered the first atomic bomb and helped to end of WWII. But the hangar has seen better days. Roof panels have been lost to winds and the wood corner supports are about to fall apart. Windows are broken and the building is full of asbestos. Just strengthening the structure would cost $450,000, and restoring it would require $4-$5 million, says the National Trust for Historic Preservation, which has included the hangar on its 2009 list of the America`s most endangered historic places.
For Sale: Military uniform of Enola Gay pilot Paul Tibbets
One key piece of American military history, the uniform of Enola Gay pilot Paul Tibbets, is for sale. Slightly worn and adorned with his Distinguished Service Cross, the uniform he wore when bombing Hiroshima could fetch a $250,000. The uniform comes with the provenance it was Tibbets`s, says Alexander Autographs President Bill Panagopulos, adding that even in hard economic times, historical relics sell: "There is real money in autographs and historical memorabilia." Mark Schmidt-Fellner adds: "Investors are taking a serious look at autographs, manuscripts and other memorabilia... We are starting to see new types of bidders come to our market."
Hiroshima Bomber Pilot Paul Tibbets`s flight logs for sale at $150,000
A World War II file folder recording the flights of Paul Tibbets will be for sale for as much as $150,000. The record contains 500 typed pages documenting Tibbets`s flights, like 1937 training exercises in Texas and a 1942 daylight raid over Nazi-occupied Europe. Paul Tibbets commanded the B-29 called Enola Gay that dropped the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima in 1945. The bomb killed 70,000 people instantly and destroyed 2/3 of the Japanese city. Demand for WWII documents is increasing as manuscripts from earlier eras become scarcer and more high-priced. A letter by the U.S. general Douglas MacArthur might fetch $2,000 today, 4 times as much as 10 years ago.
Paul Tibbets who dropped the atom bomb on Hiroshima dies at 92
Brigadier-General Paul Tibbets, who died at 92, commanded the USAAF bomber Enola Gay, which dropped the atom bomb on Hiroshima on August 6 1945. In Sept 1944 he was briefed on the Manhattan Project and ordered to form a special unit of B-29 Super Fortress bombers, the 393rd Bombardment Squadron (later part of the 509th Composite Group), and train it to deliver these weapons in combat operations. He requisitioned 15 B-29s and supervised the modifications to make them capable of delivering the weapons. This included fitting fuel-injected engines, a re-configured bomb bay and changes to the aircraft`s armour plating.
Enola Gay artifacts come to N.C. Museum of History
The N.C. Museum of History announced that it has acquired Colonel Thomas W. Ferebee`s military collection, including notes written on that day, maps, his dress uniform, desk nameplate, reunion pins and mugs, and paperwork documenting his 30-year career in the Air Force. It was a single day that ensured him a place in history: On Aug. 6, 1945, Ferebee pulled a lever aboard the Enola Gay that dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. It killed at least 80,000 Japanese and destroyed 2/3 of the city`s buildings. Ferebee had no idea he had launched the first nuclear attack until later.