Skip to comments.Doolittle Raiderís Final Toast To Take Place This November
Posted on 09/05/2013 7:34:04 AM PDT by Little Ray
WARBIRD RADIO - The National Museum of the United States Air Force along with the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders announced this morning that the U.S. Air Force will host the famed Doolittle Tokyo Raiders final toast to their fallen comrades during an invitation-only ceremony on Nov. 9 at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.
On April 18, 1942, 80 men achieved the unimaginable when they took off from an aircraft carrier on a top secret mission to bomb Japan. Led by Lt. Col. James H. Jimmy Doolittle, these men came to be known as the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders. Today, just four of the men survive: Lt. Col. Richard E. Cole, co-pilot of Crew No. 1; Lt. Col. Robert L. Hite, co-pilot of Crew No. 16; Lt. Col. Edward J. Saylor, engineer-gunner of Crew No. 15; and Staff Sgt. David J. Thatcher, engineer-gunner of Crew No. 7. At this time, all four Raiders are planning to attend the event. According to Museum Director Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Jack Hudson, the Doolittle Raid was an extremely important event in the development of American air power because it marked the first combat use of strategic bombardment by the U.S. Army Air Forces in World War II.
(Excerpt) Read more at warbirdradio.com ...
I recently got a long chain email about this. Uplifting, and sad at the same time.
We will not see a generation like that again in our lifetime.
Perhaps I’m misunderstanding ... there are 4 survivors who will attend this year. Is this their annual “final toast” ceremony and there will be another one held next year? Or is this the last ever (final) ceremony as the survivors are in failing health and unable to attend [as happened with our local Battle of the Bulge ceremony - so very sad].
1972 Gen. Doolittle came to VAFB, CA, for our Olympic Arena competition.
ICBM combat crews compete in all aspects of missile and RV assembly, test, and checkout, leading up to launch.
Also, got see Gen. Curtis LeMay.
Where do we get such men? The Doolittle mission was one of the most heroic and daring of any military action of any nation. It was incredible.
The Greatest Generation.
Agree about the “generation” comment but the performance and sacrifices of our military over the last 30 plus years has been impressive and I believe compare well with the best in our history.
According to the email I got about it, this will be the last one.
The four men will crack open the bottle of 1896 cognac that has been saved for this occasion.
1896 was the year GEN Doolittle was born.
It never did mention why this is the last toast. Presumably because of the advanced age and deteriorating health of the last 4 survivors.
Having led some of them into the storm, I can agree.
I couldn't find the ages of the other three heroes except they are all in their 90s.
Let's hope these brave Americans live to be in their 100s !!!
All volunteers on that mission of course, and I’m sure they had to turn many others away who would have gladly gone.
All four of ‘em are in their 90’s if not older. It is almost certainly the LAST toast.
Somebody else at the museum will have turn their cups upside down as they pass...
Great article on a very special occasion. Great website too.
Very interesting and informative link:
Lots of pics and biological info too.
“Ligwa megwa,” as Thatcher told the Chinese.
A group of our finest men.
Well said and agree.
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