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WWII aircraft topic at military roundtable

ASHLAND, Ky. — Dr. Stephen Young will share his experiences with 31 of the world’s most legendary prejet aircraft on Thursday for the final East Kentucky Military Historical Society Roundtable of 2013.

Young, who resides in Clearfield, will speak about “Venerable Aircraft of World War II” at 6 p.m. at the Highlands Museum and Discovery Center on Winchester Avenue.

“I’m not a pilot and I’m not a vet. I was born right in the middle of World War II,” Young said, explaining he was fascinated by the stories and books published after the war detailing the technology of the day.

“I developed an interest in that technology — not just aviation,” Young said, noting the connection between weapons and other systems developed during WWII that continue to serve the modern-day military.

Young said he will focus his presentation on “about 30” of the aircraft used by the United States, as well as their British counterparts and adversaries from Germany and Japan.

“Some of the aircraft have virtually disappeared,” he said, citing the existence of planes, including the Japanese “Zero,” which are in museums after being reconstructed from surviving components.

All of the more famous planes of that time, such as Corsairs and Mustangs, will be represented along with notes and photos about a few aircraft many may be unaware of, he said.

“Do you know what a B-32 Dominator was?” he asked, explaining it was a bomber built by Consolidated as a backup aircraft in case the B-29 “Superfortress” proved unsuccessful. All built were destroyed after the war ended, he said. “There are none left. We only have pictures of them.”

Young said he has only offered his presentation a few times before and looks forward to speaking with an Ashland audience likely to include aviators and vets as well as history enthusiasts.

Young said he will also bring his collection of cockpit instruments from many of the era’s most remarkable aircraft.
 

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