Doolittle Raiders Gather

Five of the nine surviving Doolittle Raiders gathered April 16-18 in Columbia, S.C., for the group’s 67th reunion. Thousands of people attended the event to meet the living legends, who on April 18, 1942, led by then-Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle, carried out a daring bomber attack on Japan, launching from the USS Hornet. With hundreds of spectators present on April 17, four of the Doolittle Raiders—retired Lt. Col. Richard Cole, retired Lt. Col. Robert Hite, retired Lt. Col. Edward Saylor, and retired Maj. Thomas Griffin—participated in a ceremony during which the official Doolittle Raiders’ crest, which reads “Toujours au Danger” or “Always into Danger,” was passed to the aircrew of the 34th Bomb Squadron’s flagship B-1B bomber. The bomber unit is assigned to Ellsworth AFB, S.D. Brig Gen. James Kowalski, commander of Air Force Global Strike Command (Provisional), took part in the ceremony. The Celebrate Freedom Foundation organized the event. (Defense Media Activity report by Navy Lt. Jennifer Cragg) (For more, read Doolittle’s Raid from the April 2009 issue of Air Force Magazine.)