After a little more than two-hour flight, including meeting up with a B-52 jet bomber over Oklahoma, the restored B-29 known as “Doc” arrived at the site of its first air show.
The Wichita-built Superfortress landed at Barksdale Air Force Base in Bossier City, La., shortly after 1:30 p.m Central on Friday.
There, the World War II bomber will participate in Barksdale’s Defenders of Liberty Air Show on Saturday and Sunday including demonstration flights like Friday’s flyby.
Before landing, Doc and the B-52 assigned to Barksdale were joined by two other World War II aircraft — a B-25 and a Boeing B-17 bomber — for a flyby of the base, said Josh Wells, spokesman for Doc’s Friends, the nonprofit group that owns Doc.
The Barksdale trip followed a successful, 2 1/2-hour-long maintenance flight on Thursday that took the plane from Wichita to Pratt to Great Bend and back, Wells said.
“The airplane performed perfectly,” Wells said.
Doc’s presence at Barksdale has historical significance. That’s the base where Doc was commissioned following delivery to the Army Air Corps nearly 70 years ago.
“It’s kind of a homecoming of sorts,” Wells said.
The plane is expected to return to Wichita on Sunday.
Barksdale is one of three air shows on Doc’s calendar so far. The other two are Wings Over Whiteman at Whiteman Air Force Base in Knob Noster, Mo., June 10-11; and the Experimental Aircraft Association's AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wis., July 24-30.
Doc’s Friends is also expected to have the airplane at an open house in June at Yingling Aviation at Wichita Eisenhower National Airport. That event was originally scheduled for April 22 but postponed because of bad weather.
A firm date for the June open house has not been set.