World War II Bomber Flies Into Fayetteville During Bikes Blues And BBQ

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

FAYETTEVILLE [KFSM] – The Commemorative Air Force tour stopped in Fayetteville Thursday to showcase the last flyable B-29 bomber, used towards the end of World War II.

The warplanes are on display at the Arkansas Air & Military Museum at Drake Field for people to take a look inside, and for several hundred dollars, go up for a flight. Organizers also brought a C-45 Expeditor, a Boeing Stearman and a Fairchild PT-19.

Board member Russell Smith said the bomber, named “FI-FI”, is similar to the one that dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima in 1945.

“To watch it start up, it belches smoke and makes unique sounds, it’s a real piece of living history,” Smith said.

He said they always try to get the WWII planes to Drake Field during Bikes, Blues and BBQ to attract all of the out-of-town people to check out a local museum.

“It helps keep the museum in business here too, it help keeps our doors open,” He said.

World War II veteran Thomas Walter Alsobrook, 89, was there Thursday afternoon to see the Superfortress land. Alsobrook retired as a major from the United States Air Force after 23 years of service. He said he flew B-29’s throughout the war on nuclear missions.

“I just always wanted to fly, so I did,” Alsobrook said.

His son, Thomas Steven Alsobrook, said the last time he’s seen a bomber was in 1954. He said he and his mother took a picture in front of his father’s plane at an Air Force base around Christmas-time.

“I was impressed, I think he’s enjoyed it out here and I love the opportunity to get him out here at least one more time to see one,” Alsobrook said.

The air museum will be open Friday- Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The flights will take off at 9 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Reservations to fly in the warplanes can be made online by clicking here.

The cost to see the B-29 bomber is $15 for adults and $10 for kids ages 11-17. Children 10 and under are free. The ticket also includes access to the Arkansas Air & Military Museum. The warplanes will leave Monday for their next stop on the tour.