OKALOOSA ISLAND, Fla. (WKRG) — Okaloosa Island will be the place to be on April 18.

Okaloosa County is hosting its largest aircraft flyover in honor of the Doolittle Raiders and the 75th anniversary of the United States Air Force.

29 planes will take off from Hurlburt Field at about 5 p.m. The Greater Fort Walton Beach Chamber of Commerce said anywhere from Mary Esther to the Destin pass will have views of the planes.

The Okaloosa Island Boardwalk will be the center stage for the event.

Flyover Details:

  • April 18 at 5 p.m.
  • Okaloosa Island
  • 29 planes
  • 11 minute show
  • Can be viewed from Mary Esther to the Destin Pass

Doolittle Raiders Ceremony at Mattie Kelly Arts Center

“The Raider legacy really started after the war and then continued in 1959. This is an important part that carried the Raider history in 1959 as the Raiders began to meet on a regular basis annually on the celebration of the raid in Tucson, AZ. The Tucson, AZ Chamber of Commerce bestowed upon them 80 silver goblets. 

The silver Goblets have their names upright and upside down, and at that time thereafter every year on the anniversary of the raid on April 18th, the Raiders would get together to store fallen brethren and turn the goblet over, and that’s why the Raiders legacy has continued because of those goblets. 

And now here we are 80 years later, there’s one goblet still upright that goblet is for Richard Cole, who passed away in April of 2019, and because of a variety of circumstances they haven’t been able to have the reunion. 

So on April 18th, 2022 at Mattie Kelly Arts Center at Northwest Florida State College, there will be a ceremony to officially end the generation and turn that goblet over. “

Ted Corcoran

Before the flyover will be a special ceremony at Mattie Kelly Arts Center.