Sunday, September 21, 2008

Historic Wendover Air Field

Yesterday we took a day trip to an Air Show in Wendover, Ut. And because we always include a history lesson in our vacations, this was no exception. We took a tour of the air field and it was actually fascinating. There were so many things I never knew, that in all of the US, Utah had such a huge tie to the events that precipitated the end of WWII.

According to the guide, Wendover Air Field was the Area 51 of it's day. Everything a secret and I can't help but wonder how much the pilots and air crew of those planes knew.

It was neat to me to see that place, to know that it must be similar to the places where my Grandfather and B's grandfather were stationed. To see the barracks and wonder what their lives were like at that time. We saw the mess hall, the hospital, the chapel.

We saw the building where the Enola Gay was stripped of everything not absolutely vital to it's mission to make it able to carry the very heavy bomb it would later drop on Hiroshima.

We saw a replica of the bomb, covered in signatures, including the signature of the pilot. The bomb that seemed so small when compared with the devastation it caused.

We saw the bomb pit where the bomb was lowered on a hydraulic lift, then the plane parked over the pit and the bomb lifted back up to be attached to the plane. According to the guide, there are only three of these in the world. Two at Wendover, and one on the Tinian Islands.

We saw the building where all the secret plans were housed.

And thanks to the airshow we were able to see many of the planes that flew during that time.

Although they did not have a B-24 Liberator (My Grandfather's plane) or a B-17 Flying Fortress (B's Grandfather's plane).

And we were able to see the Heritage Flight which honors the men and women of today and yesterday who serve, sacrifice, and die in the Armed Forces. It is awe inspiring and tear inducing.

It's a humbling experience to walk there, among the ghosts.


The Yeates said...

i love to read your blog.. you always make things sound so fun.