WWII Aircraft Flyover Scheduled Over Washington

The Arsenal of Democracy returns to honor the 75th anniversary of the end of WWII.

arsenal of democracy
Four P-51 Mustangs pass the National Mall during the Arsenal of Democracy Flyover in 2015.Arsenal of Democracy

The Arsenal of Democracy has scheduled another mass formation flyover with groups of historic warbirds forming up over Washington D.C. The event, scheduled for May 8, 2020, will commemorate the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II. Twenty-four warbird formations will feature approximately 100 U.S. and Allied WWII aircraft representing significant battles of the war. The flyover sequence will end with a missing man formation to honor the many men and women who lost their lives in the war.

Participating aircraft include the Curtis P-40 Warhawk, Bell P-39 Airacobra, Lockheed P-38 Lightning, North American P-51 Mustang, Republic P-47 Thunderbolt, Vought F4U Corsair, North American B-25 Mitchell, Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress, Avro Lancaster, Supermarine Spitfire, Hawker Hurricane and others. The airplanes featured in the flyover will come from individual warbird owners as well as several warbird organizations, such as the Commemorative Air Force, Dakota Territory Air Museum, Fighter Factory, Friends of Doc and Fagen Fighters.

“It is a great honor for the Commemorative Air Force to once again play a leading role in such a powerful event,” said CAF’s president and CEO, Hank Coates. “Our mission: to educate, inspire and honor is embodied in this exhibition.”

A WWII memorial will also be dedicated during the event, honoring former president Dwight D. Eisenhower who led the Allied Forces to victory. The Dwight D. Eisenhower National Memorial is currently under construction near the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. A special C-47 flyover will take place over the memorial, led by "That's All Brother," the C-47 that brought in a mass formation of C-47s dropping paratroopers over Normandy during D-Day.

“Just as in 2015, this flyover will be conducted for the sole purpose of honoring those who fought in the epic struggle and the men and women on the home front who created the Arsenal of Democracy,” said Pete Bunce, the president and CEO of the General Aviation Manufacturers Association. “We hope that by recognizing their sacrifices and achievements, all Americans, especially our younger generations, can reflect and be inspired by what can be achieved when a nation unites for a common and just purpose.”