Historic WWII plane to return to Bainbridge airport Friday

BT-15Wednesday is National Aviation Day. It was established in 1939 by President Roosevelt, and the date was selected because it is Orville Wright’s birthday (the Wright brothers were the first men to fly at Kitty Hawk, N.C.)

In addition, on Aug. 19, 1942 a BT-15 trainer was delivered to Bainbridge Army Air Field for use in pilot training. This same aircraft is owned and still flown by Tom Smith of Punta Gorda, Fla.. This Friday morning, August 22nd, Tom plans to “fly in” to the Decatur County Industrial Air Park Bainbridge to commemorate the delivery of his aircraft 72 years ago.

Decatur County officials plan to have a “get together” at 11:30 a.m. at the renovated WW II hangar to mark the occasion. The visit by the historic BT-15 plane is dependent on weather conditions, especially considering it is a rare and vintage aircraft.

The Decatur County Industrial Air Park is located about seven miles north of Bainbridge on U.S. Highway 27. To get to the airport, turn left when you see the American flag flying next to the industrial park sign. Cross the railroad tracks and keep going straight until you see the airport terminal on the left.

An aerial view of the Bainbridge Air Base in 1944.
An aerial view of the Bainbridge Air Base in 1944.


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