I my opinion the B-17 was the coolest, most beautiful looking plane ever built.It represents righteous American might,’’ winged victory’’ if you will. Besides it had the large area around the nose on which to paint those Emilo Vargas- style of scantily clad babes with names like “Sack Time’’, “Shoo Shoo Baby’’ and my favorite “Miss Bea Haven’’. I have had the honor over the years of know a couple of vets who flew in B-17s serving in The Eighth Air Force. One was a pilot , another was a navigator and the third guy was a ball-turret gunner. They have all told me that they’re because they flew in a B-17. One of them told “You could be shot thorough with holes with one or two engines out and still she’d bring you home’’.
My dad was a B-17 pilot during WWII, stationed in England also, he would tell us some wild stories..... We lost him 1/8/2013
Other beautiful planes:
A-12/SR-71 “Blackbird” (brilliant engineering)
XB-70 “Valkyrie” (incredible engineering for a plane now 50 years old)
B-52 (amazing that some of these planes were built before their pilot’s fathers were born)
Honorable mention: The Avro “Lancaster” (ugly as sin, but the only plane able to carry the “Tallboy” and “Grand Slam” bombs, which dramatically shortened the war in Europe)
Without a doubt, my friend. Well stated.