- B-25 DOOLI1TLE RAIDER 1/41 SIGNED BY RICHARD COLE
B-25 DOOLI1TLE RAIDER 1/41 SIGNED BY RICHARD COLE
B-25B Mitchell Bomber Signed by Richard ColeThe Doolittle Raiders have held an annual reunion almost every year since the late 1940s. The high point of each reunion is a solemn, private ceremony in which the surviving Raiders perform a roll call, then toast their fellow Raiders who died during the previous year. Specially engraved silver goblets, one for each of the 80 Raiders, are used for this toast; the goblets of those who have died are inverted. Each Raider's name is engraved on his goblet both right side up and upside down. The Raiders drink a toast using a bottle of cognac that accompanies the goblets to each Raider reunion. In 2013 the remaining Raiders decided to hold their last public reunion at Fort Walton Beach, Florida, not far from Eglin Air Force Base, where they trained for the original mission. The bottle and the goblets had been maintained by the United States Air Force Academy on display in Arnold Hall, the cadet social center, until 2006. On 19 April 2006, these memorabilia were transferred to the National Museum of the United States Air Force at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio.
The "final toast to fallen comrades" by the surviving raiders took place at the NMUSAF on 9 November 2013, preceded by a B-25 flyover, and was attended by Richard Cole, Edward Saylor, and David ThatcherB25 DOOLI1TLE RAIDER 1/41 SIGNED BY RICHARD COLE B 25 DOOLI1TLE RAIDER 1/41 SIGNED BY RICHARD COLE