Thousands of visitors enjoyed a day out at IWM Duxford stateside-style today, Friday 19 August, at American Air Day.
Visitors met and mingled with men and women from the Third Air Force of the United States Air Force in Europe, based at RAF Lakenheath and RAF Mildenhall in East Anglia.
There were a wide range of fascinating demonstrations, from the K9 dog display team, to the Birdman with his stunning birds of prey. There was a display by the USAFE Operational Support Service showing how they prepare a fighter aircraft for readiness, using Duxford’s own static F-15 Eagle for true authenticity, and a display of Security Forces Humvee vehicles and equipment.
In a poignant Missing in Action ceremony, the USAFE Honor Guard remembered United States personnel who are missing in action or lost their lives in active service.
Imperial War Museum Duxford was delighted to welcome back SR-71 Blackbird pilot Colonel Richard Graham who hosted walk-around tours of the Blackbird spy plane that he flew, which is now in pride of place in the American Air Museum.
There were also displays by the USAFE weather display team and medical team. Visitors also had to the chance to see some stylish American cars and motorbikes.
The USAFE C-130 aircraft flew in, landed and opened for very popular public tours.
In the skies there were exciting fly-pasts and displays. There were a series of United States Air Force fly-pasts, comprising two F-15E aircraft, followed by a fly-past of a KC-135. This was followed by a fly-past of two F-15C aircraft.
Duxford’s historic American aircraft then took to the skies, with displays by a pair of North American Harvards, followed by a Boeing Stearman, and then a pair of S1 Pitts aircraft.
The final flypast of USAF F-15E aircraft was followed by a second display of Duxford aircraft, including the North American F-86 Sabre, Beech Staggerwing and Consolidated PBY-5A Catalina.
It was a fantastic day of Anglo-American celebration, enjoyed by visitors from both sides of the pond!