CALIFORNIA—The Condor Squadron flew WWII warplanes across the Fourth of July sky to celebrate the holiday in lieu of the many fireworks shows canceled this year.
“We are going to honor all of those in California with fly by for our nation’s birthday,” said Condor Squadron President Chris Rushing. “That’s what we like doing, is giving back to the public.”
Beginning at 2 p.m., the Condor Squadron flew five warplanes through the Pacific Palisades. Starting at Mandeville Canyon, the warplanes flew repeated passes down Sunset Boulevard reaching the Pacific Ocean and heading up Palisades Drive to the Pacific Palisades Highlands. At 2:45 p.m. the planes reached Moorpark.
At 6 p.m., the planes made fly-by appearances over Huntington Beach, Newport, Laguna Beach, and San Clemente. Shortly after, the five planes flew over Westlake at 6:50 p.m. and Calabasas at 7:05 p.m.
“As the 4th of July approaches we are reminded of greatness that has come from tragedy, of accomplishment that has come from perseverance and that when we are united (even metaphorically) we stand solid,” the Condor Squadron wrote on Facebook announcing the event.
The Condor Squadron is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the memory of veterans. Founded in 1962 by members of the 146th fighter group, the group’s main activity is memorial flights in restored WWII planes.
With their annual fundraiser canceled due to COVID-19, the group turned to Go Fund Me to raise $50,000 for a new AT-6 engine, operating costs, and maintenance.
“These magnificent WWII warbirds honor America’s veterans — roaring above parades, ball games, and celebrations of all kinds. And it is an all-volunteer non-profit organization,” the group wrote on their Go Fund Me page.
The Condor Squadron wrote on Facebook, “We support you and are thankful for your support of us. We wish you all a safe and healthy Independence Day.”