Warbirds

GRANDSON OF ENOLA GAY COMMANDER TO FLY B-29 DOC AT WINGS OVER WHITEMAN AIRSHOW

Brig. Gen. Paul Tibbets IV is the grandson of Brig. Gen. Paul Tibbets Jr., who was commander of the B-29 Enola Gay on its mission to drop an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan

As reported by The Wichita Eagle, grandson of Enola Gay commander, Brig. Gen. Paul Tibbets IV, will be at the cockpit of restored B-29 bomber Doc (one of only two flying B-29s in the world) today when the warbird makes a trip to Whiteman Air Force Base (AFB) for the Wings Over Whiteman Airshow.

Noteworthy Tibbets IV is the grandson of Brig. Gen. Paul Tibbets Jr., who was commander of the B-29 Enola Gay on its mission to drop an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan, in Aug. 1945.

Tibbets IV also is commander of the 509th Bomb Wing at Whiteman, and a B-2 stealth bomber pilot.

The B-29 Enola Gay (currently on display at the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum), delivered the first nuclear weapon used in warfare, the Mk I bomb (nicknamed “Little Boy”). The bomb detonated at an altitude of 1,800 feet over Hiroshima, on Aug. 6, 1945. The result of the Manhattan Project, begun in June 1942, “Little Boy” was a gun-type weapon, which detonated by firing one mass of uranium down a cylinder into another mass to create a self-sustaining nuclear reaction. Weighing about 9,000 pounds, it produced an explosive force equal to 20,000 tons of TNT.

Photo credit: Erin McClellan [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Additional source: National Museum of the U.S. Air Force

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

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