Two historic Douglas C-47 Skytrain troop transport aircraft will highlight this year’s World War II Heritage Days, hosted by the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) Dixie Wing April 27-28, 2019 at Atlanta Regional Airport (Falcon Field) in Peachtree City. The C-47 “That’s All, Brother” was recently restored to its original configuration by the CAF, with help from a national Kickstarter funding campaign, and “Placid Lassie” was previously restored and has appeared at numerous aviation events.
Both aircraft, actual veterans of the 1944 D-Day invasion, are part of the D-Day Squadron, which plans to take at least 20 historic aircraft back to England for a 75th anniversary reenactment of the invasion. The C-47s, also known as Dakotas, towed massive cargo gliders and dropped more than 13,000 paratroopers on the morning of June 6, 1944.
WWII Heritage Days is the largest annual 1940s theme event in Georgia. Throughout the weekend, more than 500 volunteers will conduct special events such as Allied and Axis troops in reenactment battles, 1940s music shows, veteran and historian presentations, education displays and activities for children. On Saturday evening, the romance and glamor of the Big Band Era will return with “Keep ‘em Flying”, a 1940s-theme hangar dance featuring a live 20-piece swing band.
Following the Pathfinders, “That’s All, Brother” led the main force of more than 800 aircraft, dropping paratroopers of the 101st Airborne as part of the airborne invasion of France on D-Day. Based in San Marcos, Texas, “That’s All, Brother” has been meticulously restored to its historical D-Day configuration. After the war, it passed through 16 civilian owners and its story and significance were forgotten until it was discovered in Wisconsin at Basler Turbo Conversions. The CAF led a remarkable rescue operation to acquire and restore the aircraft as part of its educational mission. It is touring for major national commemoration events, air shows and flyovers before its flight to Europe in June. Rides will be available on “That’s All Brother” while it is in Peachtree City to help fund its trip to Normandy.
“Placid Lassie,” owned and restored by the Tunison Foundation, also participated in the D-Day invasion of Europe and the Market Garden operation in Holland. “Placid Lassie” flew several missions on that fateful morning, towing gliders and later carrying paratroopers. The war continued for the plane and her crew, participating in major engagements including Operation Market Garden and the crossing of the Rhine.
“WWII Heritage Days is an immersion experience, and these aircraft, combined with the appearance of the Liberty Jump Team, will inspire people of all ages and walks of life to connect with the legacy of The Greatest Generation,” said Dixie Wing Education Officer Rick Ector.
The Commemorative Air Force (CAF) Dixie Wing will recreate the 1940s era with the music of Glenn Miller at a Hangar Dance and displays of historic aircraft, military vehicles, antique cars and vintage fashion. WWII veterans will be honored throughout the weekend.”
For more information about WWII Heritage Days, please visit www.wwiidays.org.