New Orleans FBO hosts B-17

NEW ORLEANS – Hawthorne Global Aviation Services, an FBO at Lakefront Airport in New Orleans, will host the Texas Raiders, an authentically restored World War II B-17 Bomber owned and operated by the Commemorative Air Force, on the weekend of June 1-2.

This special warbird will be with Hawthorne Global at its newly renovated facility beginning at 10 a.m. on Saturday, June 1, through 5 p.m. on Sunday, June 2. The two-day event is open to the public for walk-through tours. Tours are $5 for adults (free for World War II veterans), $3 for children (free for children under 5), and rides are $625 for a seat in the nose and $425 for all other seats. For B-17 ride reservations, contact or 817-304-0393.

Hawthorne Global Aviation is also hosting a fly-in to coincide with this special weekend and has invited all the FBOs throughout the Gulf Coast to come enjoy the sights and sounds, not to mention the spectacular history, of the B-17.

“It’s a special treat to host such an important piece of aviation history, and we’re looking forward to an exciting weekend of hosting the public and our fellow aviation enthusiasts who come out to see the B-17,” said Jay Taffet, General Manager of the Hawthorne Lakefront FBO. “Being the grandson of a B-17 bombardier, this is also a special, personal opportunity for me to see what aviation was like for my grandfather and how he served in World War II.”

The Texas Raiders B-17 was fully restored in 2009 and has performed in airshows, sporting event fly-overs and public tours all over the country. The aircraft was delivered to the U.S. Army Air Force in 1945 and flew its last flying mission prior to its restoration in 2001 when it marked the grand opening of the New Orleans National D-Day Museum with a fly-over. More information is available at or

“We hope everyone will join us for a very unique experience. Watching and hearing this very rare aircraft take to the skies gives the younger generations a chance to relive the history of World War II. Texas Raiders is the most authentic B-17 flying today and has been beautifully restored by hundreds of dedicated volunteers. The members of the CAF, Gulf Coast Wing, are proud to present our B17 Flying Fortress to the folks of New Orleans,” says Commemorative Air Force Tour Planner Colonel Vicki Thomas.

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