WWII, Korean War airplanes touch down at Camarillo Airport for Wings of Freedom Tour

CAMARILLO, Calif. (KABC) -- The Camarillo Airport has some visitors for the next few days - five vintage military aircraft from World War II and the Korean War touched down for the Wings of Freedom Tour.

"Without these planes and the crew that flew them, we wouldn't be here. They were ready, willing and able to do whatever it took," veteran Larry Nichols said.

The planes travel to 110 airports across the country and are on the road 10 and a half months each year. They include a B-24, B-17, B-25 and P-51 Mustang.

"A lot of them got shot down or shot up. They made technology so much better that now those are not useful for our wars. But, they were at one time, and they won wars for us so I think that's important," Camarillo resident Darlene Dickinson said.

"(It) gives you perspective. See what these guys went through. What their living conditions were. Good picture opportunities. Get to touch history," Sean Stelmon said.

Larry Nichols climbed inside the B-17 flying fortress and couldn't believe how cramped our soldiers had been.

"They also must have been 5 feet tall because it's a hard. There's no extra space in this thing at all. Those two 50-caliber machine guns they have mounted in the middle, one on either side. If they were in a fire fight, these guys have to be bumping each other all over the place," Nichols said.

The 70-year-old planes require 40 hours of maintenance for every hour of flight time. For $450, you can take a flight. For $2,200, you'll have the chance to fly the P-51 yourself.

"World War II vets come out and look at the airplane and they'll start talking about it and telling stories and their family will come up to me afterwards and they say they haven't spoken about WWII my entire life," said Rob Pinksten, the chief pilot for the Wings of Freedom Tour.

If you're not interested in flying on one of the five vintage military aircraft, it cost $15.00 to view and go inside them. The Wings of Freedom Tour heads to Brackett Airport in La Verne on Monday and then Orange County later next week.
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