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Thread: Final Toast of the Doolittle Raiders

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    EAA Staff / Moderator Zack Baughman's Avatar
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    Final Toast of the Doolittle Raiders

    Saturday, November 9 will be the final reunion of the last four remaining veterans of the Doolittle Raid. There are numerous activities for the public to attend during the reunion, which will take place at the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio. For more info, visit http://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil/new...p?id=123368299.

    There is a great op-ed on CNN about the Raiders here: http://www.cnn.com/2013/11/03/opinio...dal/index.html

    If you plan on attending, please post here. There are five of us EAA staffers that are driving down to attend - maybe we can have a little EAA member meetup or something while there.

    Zack

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    JimRice85's Avatar
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    Thought the final toast was going to be a low-key, private event.
    Jim Rice
    Wolf River Airport (54M)
    Collierville, TN
    1946 Globe GC-1B Swift N3368K
    1946 Piper J-3C Cub N7155H

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    jjhoneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimRice85 View Post
    Thought the final toast was going to be a low-key, private event.
    I hope it is not.

    These guys deserve to go out in a blaze of glory.

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    EAA Staff / Moderator Zack Baughman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimRice85 View Post
    Thought the final toast was going to be a low-key, private event.
    From the NMUSAF website: Although the final toast ceremony is not open to the public, a LIVE feed of the event will be broadcast on The Pentagon Channel at 6 p.m. EST. A link to the LIVE stream will also be available on the day of the event at www.nationalmuseum.af.mil and www.af.mil.

  5. #5

    doolittle raiders final toast

    Quote Originally Posted by Zack Baughman View Post
    Saturday, November 9 will be the final reunion of the last four remaining veterans of the Doolittle Raid. There are numerous activities for the public to attend during the reunion, which will take place at the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio. For more info, visit http://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil/new...p?id=123368299.

    There is a great op-ed on CNN about the Raiders here: http://www.cnn.com/2013/11/03/opinio...dal/index.html

    If you plan on attending, please post here. There are five of us EAA staffers that are driving down to attend - maybe we can have a little EAA member meetup or something while there.

    Zack
    The event this saturday is the final gathering of the Raiders to toast "those that have gone". The Raiders decided over a year ago, that the 71st reunion at Ft Walton Beach (Eglin) would be the last "Reunion" . As we all know, the long standing tradition was that when there was only two Raiders remaining, they agreed that the 1896 Hennesy would be opened for a "final toast" to "Those that have gone" (Doolittle's words). After Tom Griffin passed last February, the surviving raiders gathered in private and decided that due to the difficulties with travel and health they were beginning to experience, they would not risk waiting till there was only two left and possibly be in too poor of health to get together for the final toast. They decided to do it while they could still travel and at least three attend. Bob Hite's health will make his presence impossible. Long ago the Raiders made a promise to the National Museum of the United States Air Force that when the time came for the "final toast" they would come back to the museum, where the goblets are displayed (on loan from the Raiders) .

    Only once in the history of the goblets and the raiders, have they let anyone into to the room for their toast "to those that have gone". I was fortunate enough to be one of those back in 2002 in Columbia SC. I sat in my chair in silence afterwards for quite a while. I had never witnessed anything as solemn and emotional. The Raiders themselves decided this final toast would be with family and invited guests and for history's sake, allow it to be recorded.

    There will be an outdoor pubic memorial service at the Raider's monument outside the National Museum at 2pm on the 9th. Bring a small flag and welcome the Raiders when they arrive. I was honored to again be asked to lead a flight of B-25's for a missing man salute flight over that ceremony. this will be the last time the Raiders plan on being together publicly. This is the final page in the final chapter of one of our country's greatest military missions and traditions. After Saturday, it will be up to all of us to not let the memory of the Raiders and their famous mission pass into obscurity.

    Larry Kelley
    Owner/pilot/mechanic
    B25 Panchito

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    EAA Staff / Moderator Zack Baughman's Avatar
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    Larry - THANK YOU for all that you have done to make the last few Raiders reunions so special and all that you do to keep the memory alive!

    Zack

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    rmock's Avatar
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    I've heard of their reunions. It's so sad to here that there are only a few of the Raiders left. Those men are heroes. They are an inspiration. I hope that they will never be forgotten.

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    JimRice85's Avatar
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    I'm privileged to have met GEN Doolittle when he was awarded the Thayer Award at West Point. I met Bob Cole, his co-pilot several years later in San Antonio. Great men.
    Jim Rice
    Wolf River Airport (54M)
    Collierville, TN
    1946 Globe GC-1B Swift N3368K
    1946 Piper J-3C Cub N7155H

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zack Baughman View Post
    If you plan on attending, please post here. There are five of us EAA staffers that are driving down to attend - maybe we can have a little EAA member meetup or something while there.

    Zack
    Zack, I'll be flying down to Dayton from Wisconsin to attend the ceremony with a writer friend. We'll look for you EAA folks. We'll be in a Fairchild 24 if the weather holds.

  10. #10
    EAA Staff / Moderator Zack Baughman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Weeds1 View Post
    Zack, I'll be flying down to Dayton from Wisconsin to attend the ceremony with a writer friend. We'll look for you EAA folks. We'll be in a Fairchild 24 if the weather holds.
    I'm not entirely sure what our exact schedule will be, but I know for sure we'll be at the "Grand Arrival" on Saturday with a large EAA banner thanking the veterans.

    Just look for this banner and you'll find us!

    EAA Doolittle Banner.JPG
    Last edited by Zack Baughman; 11-07-2013 at 11:20 AM. Reason: Banner image added

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