Vintage B-17 Bomber, Frequent Visitor To Tulsa, Destroyed In Illinois

Monday, June 13th 2011, 3:29 pm
By: News On 6

TULSA, Oklahoma -- A B-17 bomber that dates to World War II and which has visited Tulsa several times crash landed and burned in a cornfield outside Chicago on Monday. 

Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Elizabeth Isham Cory says aviation officials believe the seven people on board the plane escaped uninjured.

She says the plane took off from Aurora Municipal Airport on Monday morning and made an emergency landing about 20 minutes later in Oswego. 

The plane was built in 1944.

It has flown in the skies over Tulsa in 2008 and most recently last year.  [SEE VIDEO ABOVE]

4/28/2008 Related Story: World War II Bomber Takes Flight

Fire officials say the pilots reported a fire shortly after taking off.  They tried to make it back to the airport but landed in the corn field instead.  The fire consumed most of the plane after everyone on board got out.

The plane was owned by the Liberty Foundation based in Miami, Florida.  The foundation had restored it and flew it around the country offering flights to the public for a fee.

Read the Liberty Foundation's web site

This B-17 was built toward the end of the war and never saw any combat.  It was painted to match the colors and nose art of the original Liberty Belle that flew countless missions with the 390th Bomb Group of the 8th Air Force.