One of the most diverse arrays of World War II aircraft ever assembled flew over Southwest DC on May 8 to commemorate the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE) Day, as part of the Arsenal of Democracy World War II Victory Capitol Flyover. The flyover included dozens of World War II aircraft flying in 15 historically sequenced formations overhead. The formations represented the war’s major battles, from Pearl Harbor through the final air assault on Japan, and concluding with a missing man formation to “Taps.” Never before has such a collection of WWII aircraft been assembled at one location, to honor the large assemblage of veterans gathered at the WWII Memorial for a ceremony.
These photographs were taken by Perry Klein as the airplanes flew over the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Dept. of Energy (Forrestal), and the Federal Aviation Agency buildings in Southwest DC. Co-piloting the Missing Man plane in the Missing Man Formation was General Jack Dailey, director of the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum.
Photo caption: Missing Man Formation.