Mt. Vernon Outland Airport welcomes rare WWII bomber

MOUNT VERNON — It’s a big weekend at Mount Vernon Outland Airport, as they have the fireworks display, but also because of a special visitor.

A rare B-17 bomber, owned and operated by the Experimental Aircraft Association in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, is making a stop in Mount Vernon as part of its nationwide tour that salutes those veterans and helps the rest of us discover that history. The aircraft will be at the airport Friday through Sunday.

Everyone is invited to see and fly in this historic aircraft. More than 12,000 of these bombers were built during the early 1940s. More than 4,000 were lost during the war, mostly in high-danger bombing missions over Europe.

This particular B-17 is named Aluminum Overcast, in honor of a term coined by a wartime reporter who witnessed the flying armada of bombers overhead and remarked on the Aluminum Overcast that would soon be flying over Germany.

This particular bomber was built in 1944 and delivered to the U.S. Army at the end of World War II. More information about the airplane’s history and how southern Illinois residents can tour and fly in this historic bomber is available at B17.org.