Wednesday, November 13, 2013

390th Memorial Museum at the Pima Air and Space Museum November 9, 2013

                              The 390th was known as the Square J Group because they had a capital J on the tail of each B-17. This photo also shows the signatures of all the veterans who have visitied the museum.

The 390th Memorial Museum at the Pima Air and Space Museum just recently opened after a major 2.4 million dollar renovation. The centerpiece of the museum is the B-17 "I'll Be Around," which is on the first floor of the museum. Built later in the war the plane never bombed any targets.The plane was used by the US Coast Guard in patrol and rescue missions.The museum also has an impressive amount of memorabilia associated with the 390th including pieces of flak, a Norden Bombsite, and jackets worn by servicemen of the different squadrons. On the second floor are photos the B-17 crews. It is sobering to remember that many of them never came home.

History: The museum honors the men of the 390th  Bombardment Group of the 8th Air Force who were stationed in Great Britain. The 390th bombed many different targets including railway terminals, bridges, airports, factories and oil installations. From 1943-1945 the group flew over 300 combat missions over Europe with a loss of 181 aircraft and 714 men. Some of their achievements included bombing the coast of France before the Normandy landings, severing German supply lines during the Battle of the Bulge and dropping food supplies to starving Dutch a week before the war ended. The Group won the Presidential Unit Citation twice and held the record for the most number of enemy aircraft shot down in any one mission of 62; achieved in October of 1943. (Information from and the 390th Museum)

                                    Display showing nicknames of B-17s

                           World War II add

                       B-17 "Ill Be Around" on display

                  Another look at the B-17

Sabino Canyon Sabino Canyon Recreation Area November 5, 2013

                          Sun on the canyon walls

After Tara returned from teaching, I drove up to Sabino Canyon to explore Sabino Canyon. I overlooked Sabino Canyon because it has a road in it and wanted "real hiking." I left the parking lot at 4:30 pm and hiked a mile on the trail toward Esperero Canyon and Sabino Canyon Road. Once I reached the road  I walked it into the canyon. During the day shuttles transport people to upper part of the canyon so watch for them between 8 and 5pm. I turned around and hiked out in the dark enjoying the last light of the day. Enjoy my pictures of the evening hike. Overall I hiked about 4.5 miles with no route finding.

                       Glow on mountains in the upper part of the canyon

                      Last light of day

                                       Why I love the desert in the evening. Saguaros, sky and the moon