The bomber most effective recognized for dropping the atomic bombs on Japan also flew countless other raids. Karnig Thomasian's final mission on a B-29 Superfortress ended in flames when bombs collided and exploded in the air more than Burma in 1945.
He parachuted out and spent six months in aJapanese prison camp.
On Thursday, he was once once more in a B-29, flying from Baton Rouge to New Orleans. He and other veterans will be on hand at the WWII AirPower Expo in New Orleans this weekend.
As the bomber named Fifi took off in Baton Rouge, the 90-year-old Pompton Plains, New Jersey, native peered out of the glass-covered nose exactly where the bombardier sat for the duration of missions. He moved the bombsight from side to side.
"I was considering about my bombardier ... and how vulnerable he was. He was wide open to flak," Thomasian mentioned of runs they frequently made by way of a barrage of anti-aircraft fire.
Charles Chauncey was also on board. He flew 22 firebomb raids, such as 3 on Tokyo in what he named the "blitz" of March 1945. Although official estimates place the death toll at 125,000 from the bombings, Chauncey said he believes quite a few extra died.
"Most countries would have capitulated at that point," he stated. "The Japanese didn't. So we really bombed something like 70 cities."
David Fisher, of Lafayette, Louisiana, also took component in the flight. The last time the 89-year-old Fisher was in the significant bomber, he was a radioman on a mission dropping supplies to American prisoners at a Japanese POW camp right after Planet War II ended in September 1945.
Like the atomic bombings, the firebomb raids were widely criticized, but Fisher and Chauncey stated they had no qualms about the civilian death toll practically 70 years later.
"I do not care if you ran a hamburger stand feeding factory workers," Chauncey said. "They're as much a component of the war work as anybody else.".. (see more at: http://www.dailynewsen.com/)