VACAVILLE — Supporters of the Jimmy Doolittle Center, planned for the Nut Tree Airport in Vacaville, will have their fourth annual Stars and Stripes Salute to Doolittle fundraiser from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Oct. 18 aboard the USS Hornet Museum in Alameda.
Retired Air Force Gen. Kevin Chilton, a veteran of three space flights, including piloting the maiden voyage of the space shuttle Endeavor, will be the keynote speaker. There will also be a flyover by a World War II-era B-25 Mitchell bomber similar to the one Doolittle flew on his famous World War II raid on Tokyo.
The center, once built, will include an education center, a multipurpose meeting and conference center, a historic airplane collection, aircraft restoration workshops, library archives, Doolittle archives, a cafe and retail space. It will also have access to the Nut Tree Airport for visiting and permanent airplane use.
Its first phase will be a 40,000-square-foot aeronautics restoration and education center built in partnership with Solano Community College. It will be part of Solano College’s aviation program.
The USS Hornet Museum was chosen for the event because the vessel’s predecessor, the aircraft carrier USS Hornet (CV-8), was the carrier from which Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle launched his daring raid on Tokyo in April 1942. That USS Hornet was sunk during the Battle by the Santa Cruz Islands in October 1942.
“We believe that Jimmy Doolittle’s legacy is much greater than the famous World War II air raid,” said Brian McInerney, CEO of the Jimmy Doolittle Center, in a press release. “His leadership and innovations made possible many of the things we take for granted in today’s world of aviation. The Jimmy Doolittle Center will extend his legacy by establishing itself as a leading aerospace education center.”
Event tickets are available by contacting Serafina Chavez at [email protected] or by visiting the website at www.doolittlecenter.org. For more information, call the Jimmy Doolittle Center at 317-1134. The USS Hornet Museum is located at 707 Hornet Ave., Pier 3 in Alameda.
Reach Ian Thompson at 427-6976 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ithompsondr.