WWII plane to reenact D-Day mission
Updated: Friday, June 6 2014, 05:39 PM EDT
by Jennifer Lee
Geneseo, N.Y. -- On Thursday, hundreds of veterans and community members gathered to see five crew members take off on Whiskey 7, an old World War II C-47 plane, at the National Warplane Museum.
The plane flew over France on D-Day June 6, 1944. Next month, it will reenact that same mission for the 70th anniversary of D-Day.
"I would go with them if I could," said Kenneth Janish, a World War II veteran.
Janish said he was 20 on D-Day. He recalled the day he was deployed out of a plane similar to Whiskey 7.
"I didn't feel anything," said Janish. "I just wanted to get down because you could see the traces going through the planes, and I wanted to get down there in a hurry."
Veterans like Janish are exactly the reason why the Return to Normandy project started two years ago. It's to pay tribute to the brave men and women who sacrificed so much for others.
"These guys were part of a force that liberated an entire continent, and I think these guys knew that this was the chance," said Christian Willis, who's retired from the Army.
Two of the crew members are from Geneseo. They will fly the plan across the Atlantic Ocean to Normandy.
The plane will make seven stops on the way.
"There's no reason to rush this," said Michael Lindsay, crew chief. "I mean she's 71 years old, so we're going to let her go at her own rate."
On June 6, paratroopers will once again jump out of Whiskey 7 just as they did in 1944.
"We just want to get her back to her greatest moment in history and thank them, and thank the people of Normandy," said pilot and crew member Naomi Wadsworth.