2The B-24 It had a range of 2,850 miles. Wingspan feet Length - 67 feet 2 inches Height - 18 feet Propellers - 11 feet 6 inches in diameter It could fly 32,500 feet highThe B-24 had a better bombing target accuracy than the B-17.It could take off faster from a shorter distance because it was the first heavy bomber that used tricycle landing gear. B-24s were flown by every branch of the U.S. Armed Forces and several foreign countries.The B-24s dropped 625,000 tons of bombs and destroyed more than 4,000 enemy planes.They were the only Allied plane used in every combat theatre in WWII including Asia, India, Europe and the Pacific.
3Arsenal of DemocracyFireside Chat. White House, Washington, D.C. December 29, 1940We must be the great arsenal of democracy. For us this is an emergency as serious as war itself. We must apply ourselves to our task with the same resolution, the same sense of urgency, the same spirit of patriotism and sacrifice as we would show were we at war. --President Franklin Roosevelt
4Arsenal of DemocracyRoosevelt tells the nation about the importance of the Lend-Lease."Our most useful and immediate role is to act as an arsenal for them as well as for ourselves.“I recommend that we make it possible for those nations to continue to obtain war materials in the United States, fitting their orders into our own program. Nearly all their material would, if the time ever came, be useful for our own defense."Churchill pleaded, "Give us the tools and we'll finish the job."
5The Lend-Lease ActThe Lend-Lease Act was a diplomatic act that allowed the United States to supply other countries like Britain with war materials including B-24s.
6Willow RunFord’s Willow Run factory was the largest producer of B-24s during WWII.Willow Run made 47% of all B-24s constructed for the war.They could make a B-24 each hour.It was the first airplane to be mass produced.8,685 B-24s were made in total at Willow Run.
7PloestiThey were bombing the oil fields in Romania to damage the power of the Axis.They were bombing the oil fields in Romania to damage the power of the Axis. 310 aircrewmen were killed. It became known as Black Sunday.Targets included Oil Refineries, Marshalling Yards & Air Domes.
8Battle of the AtlanticThe United States helped allied countries win The Battle of the Atlantic through the Lend-Lease Act which provided them with B-24 Liberators.50,000 British seamen died. 30,000 out of 39,000 u-boat men died (U-boat service highest casualty rate of all German warfare forces, 72.8% of crews died). 35,00 American, Canadian, or other Allied seamen died.650 u-boats sunk. 2,900 ships sunk by u-boats. 14 million tonnage sunk by u-boats.
9Battle of the AtlanticThe Lend-Lease Act allowed war materials to be supplied by the United States to allied countries such as Britain to help fight the war against the axis. Many B-24s were supplied to the Royal Air Force who used them to defeat the U-boats in the Battle of the Atlantic. The B-24s closed the air gap in the Atlantic and turned the tide of the war in favor of the Allies.What if B-24s were not used by the RAF in the Battle of the Atlantic?More merchant ships would have been sunk.The allies would have lost The Battle of the Atlantic and possibly the war.Britain could have surrendered because they didn't have the materials to fight.We wouldn't have closed the air gap.
10Bomber VeteransI meet some veterans at air shows and they can fill out a form and give them my card.On my website, I have a page that people can put information about a veteran who they know and I would look up information about him/her and then put the veteran on my tribute page.I interview veterans because I like to learn more about WWII and hear what it was like to fly on the bombers and pay tribute to great heroes of WWII.
11Veterans who I interviewed Major Robert W. SternfelsHe was the pilot of a B-24 named the Sandman. His plane is in a picture flying over Ploesti through black smoke from bombing the oil refineries. He wrote a book called Burning Hitler's Black Gold. He was awarded The Silver Star. He called me "A Real B-24 Guy" and I got that put on a dogtag. He even wrote it in the book he sent to me.
12Veterans who I interviewed Technical Sergeant James H. WalkerHe was the Flight Engineer and Waist Gunner on the TARFU of the 26th bomb squadron of the 11th bomb group. He is the last living survivor of the TARFU crew.
13Veterans who I interviewed 1st Lieutenant Robert W. EngelbertHe completed 35 missions as a pilot on a B-24 called Plum Lake for the 456th. He received a Silver Star for his actions over Austria on February 7, 1945.
14Some Veterans who I metAt air shows in Indianapolis, Waterford & Willow Run
15The Witchcraft 1st Lieutenant Harry B. Girdler He was a navigator on TARFU which was in the 26th bomb squadron of the 11th bomb group. This group was part of the 7th air force.His son, Robert Girdler, helped me by sharingInformation and photographs of his dad and crew.He arranged for me to fly on the Witchcraft which is one of two flying B-24s around today.
16The WitchcraftRiding on the Collings Foundation's B-24 "Witchcraft" - August 6, 2010I got to fly on the B-24 from Indianapolis to Willow Run.
17My Website www.WondersofWWII.com If you move your curser over the page “more” a bar will come down,click on “Battle of the Atlantic” and you will find a link to my websiteI did last year. Another one of my websites is “Willow Run and the FordMotor Company which you need use a search engine to find.
18History Day. What it is.History Day is a competition that encourages students in 4-12th grade to learnabout history. There is a theme every year and is different. You want to have alot of primary sources in History Day.
19History Day 2010 The theme for this year was: Innovation in History: Impact andChange.
20History Day 20111st Place Michigan History Day - Youth Division Individual Website April 2011 Grand Valley State UniversitySpecial Award Michigan History Day - Best Use of Primary Sources in Youth Division April 2011 Grand Valley State University The theme for this year was: Debate & Diplomacy: Successes, Failures, andConsequences.
21In the newsI met Darlene Imus who is the librarian at the Yankee Air Museum at Willow Run. She wrote an article about me in “Hangar Happenings”. She also sponsored me as a junior member. I met her at various occasions like the polishing party.
22In the newsSteven Puhl who is the Willow run historian and gave me many things like B-24 models, books, and a copy of the blue prints for Willow Run an a B-24.