You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.


  • ePAPER

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.


Welcome to

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

Doolittle Tokyo Raiders nominated for Congressional Gold Medal

The Doolittle Tokyo Raiders could join the Wright brothers, the Tuskegee Airmen, and the Women Air Force Service Pilots with a rarely awarded Congressional Gold Medal minted in their honor.

Lawmakers in the House and the Senate have introduced legislation to award the medal to the four surviving Doolittle Raiders and display an additional Gold Medal at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.

Richard Cole, the B-25 co-pilot to the legendary Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle during the raid, was modest about the latest accolade in the works.

“All along through the years, I didn’t really ever believe that the Raiders should be singled out,” the 97-year-old Dayton native said in a telephone interview Friday. “We were just a group of young people that answered the call, and that was it. That was among the millions that did the same thing.”

Four of the five then surviving Doolittle Raiders participated in a 70th anniversary commemoration of the raid last year at the museum.

On April 18, 1942, 80 Doolittle Tokyo Raiders launched 16 Army Air Force B-25 bombers off the Navy carrier deck of the U.S.S. Hornet to strike targets in Japan four months after the Japanese attacked U.S. sailors and airmen based at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The propeller-powered airplanes launched sooner than planned because a small Japanese ship spotted the U.S. naval task force. All 16 planes bombed their targets, and all but one crashed on the return flight. Eight airmen were captured as POWs in Japan, and three of them were later executed. A fourth died in captivity. One of the bombers landed in Russia, where the crewmen were internees. Another airman died in a bailout and two others drowned off the coast of China, according to the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders Web site.

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, sponsored the Senate version of the bill to honor the Doolittle Raiders achievement. U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, is a co-sponsor of the House version.

“I just think you honor history and you honor these men … for really helping in many ways turning the tide in the Pacific,” Brown said in an interview. “… Their courage was beyond question for something that is almost unsurpassed.”

Jeffrey S. Underwood, an Air Force museum historian, said the mission changed despondent American perceptions of the war and forced the Japanese military to bring more forces back to the homeland.

“The reason that it’s so well remembered by so many people is it was absolutely a game changer,” he said.

The Congressional Gold Medal would be added to a permanent Doolittle Raiders display at the museum where, along with a B-25 on a mock-up of the Hornet’s deck, silver goblets symbolizing each of the Raiders is on display behind a glass showcase.

The congressional legislation needs two-thirds support in both the House and the Senate for consideration.

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Military

Ohio stepfather, son deploying overseas on same day
Ohio stepfather, son deploying overseas on same day

A Huber Heights family with strong military ties will send two members into a combat zone Ellie Carr said Wednesday her husband and son, both members of the Ohio Army National Guard’s 2nd Battalion, 174th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, are preparing to deploy Saturday to Afghanistan and Iraq.  Ellie Carr’s husband, 1st Sgt. Robert...
Wright-Patt gate to close as part of security upgrade
Wright-Patt gate to close as part of security upgrade

Thousands of Wright-Patterson employees will need to find a new way into work beginning Monday when the heavily trafficked National Road gate closes for several weeks because of a $1.3 million security upgrade. The upgrade is part of millions of dollars in planned improvements designed to thwart unwanted intruders. Gate 19B off National Road draws...
Troopers find Humvee stolen from Ohio National Guard armory
Troopers find Humvee stolen from Ohio National Guard armory

A military Humvee stolen from the Ohio National Guard Armory in Stow was found Friday night in a garage at a vacant house. The Ohio State Highway Patrol said tips from the public led troopers to find the vehicle. No arrests have been made, and the theft remains under investigation, the patrol said. A military Humvee was stolen from the Ohio National...
Former Navy SEAL tells Springfield men how he found his faith
Former Navy SEAL tells Springfield men how he found his faith

A retired U.S. Navy SEAL and author said one night at church saved him from himself. Chad Williams served in that branch of the military from 2004 to 2010. He spoke in Springfield to The Gathering on Wednesday morning, saying he decided to become a SEAL to mature, make an impact and not be an “Average Joe,” despite his family’s objections...
Daily News reporter wins national award
Daily News reporter wins national award

In January 2015, Dayton Daily News reporter Barrie Barber, NewsCenter 7 anchor Cheryl McHenry and videographer Bob Garlock went on a 12,000-mile journey with a crew from the 445th Airlift Wing at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. The result was a series of stories showing the challenges of performing patient care at high altitudes and the dangers endured...
More Stories