MARTINSBURG - Four vintage World War II bomber and fighter aircraft will fly into Blair County in August as part of the Wings of Freedom Tour.
A show is set for Aug. 20-22 at the Altoona-Blair County Airport, featuring tours of the vintage aircraft and an appearance by Linda Morgan, widow of Memphis Belle pilot Robert Morgan.
''We've been working on this for about three months,'' airport Manager Charles Pillar said.
Four vintage World War II aircraft will fly into Blair County in August as part of the Wings of Freedom Tour. (Courtesy photo)
The Collings Foundation of Stow, Mass., a nonprofit organization founded in 1979, will fly three restored bombers to the airport. They include a B-24 Liberator, a B-17 Flying Fortress and a B-25 Mitchell. The organization also will bring its newest addition, a P-51C Mustang dual control fighter.
The national Wings of Freedom Tour is in its 19th year and annually visits about 110 cities in more than 35 states, said Hunter Chaney, marketing director for the foundation.
At this year's show, walk-through tours of the aircraft will be available for $12 for adults and $6 for children. The fee helps keep the aircraft flying, according to foundation marketing materials.
The company also offers flights in the vintage airplanes for tax-deductible fees of $325 to $425 a person. Reservations are needed; call 800-568-8924.
In addition to the aircraft, Morgan's widow, 62, of Smith Lake, Ala., will be part of the attraction. She is a pilot and holds two world aviation speed records for flights to Kitty Hawk, N.C., from Atlanta and Asheville, N.C.
Robert Morgan died in 2004 after falling at home and breaking his neck. When he flew the Memphis Belle from November 1942 to May 1943, he was in charge of the 10-man engine aircraft that became known as the first American bomber to complete 25 runs over Europe and return to the United States without losing a single crew member.
The achievement was chronicled in a 1944 documentary and the 1990 movie ''Memphis Belle.''
The plane, bearing a buxom lady in a bathing suit, was named after Morgan's girlfriend at the time. It is now housed and under restoration at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force in Dayton, Ohio.
Linda Morgan will bring her husband's memorabilia to the show, and arrangements have been made for her to speak at an Altoona Kiwanis Club luncheon. Pillar said her appearance was arranged by invitation of Dave Scott, who helped to organize the show.