Aviation Relic: WWII veterans get to ‘meet’ B-25 bomber at Nashua Airport

Staff photo by Dean Shalhoup Family members of three World War II veterans, along with aircraft buffs and other guests at Monday's visit of the vintage B-25 bomber, take photos of the veterans and crew members on the Nashua Airport runway.

NASHUA – More than seven decades have passed since Glen Eastman last “crawled through” a B-25 bomber, something he did “plenty of times” in his capacity as an aerial gunnery instructor during World War II.

“I trained troops with these for overseas duty,” Eastman, now 94, said Monday as he looked over “Maid in the Shade,” a vintage B-25 that landed Monday at the Nashua Airport.

One of 34 World War II aircraft of its type still flying nearly 75 years after the war, the B-25 came to Nashua as part of the Arizona Commemorative Air Force Museum’s Flying Legends of Victory Tour.

Dubbed a “flying museum” by volunteers who maintain and pilot it and similar historic aircraft, “Maid in the Shade” takes World War II veterans, war-era aircraft plant workers and others up for roughly 20-minute rides during its visits to various locations.

Eastman, of Gorham, was joined by fellow World War II veterans Dick Mohrmann, 93, a longtime Nashua resident, and Paul Bedard, 90, of Dunbarton at Monday’s event.

Staff photo by Dean Shalhoup Dick Mohrmann, a longtime Nashua resident who served in the U.S. Army infantry in World War II, looks over the vintage B-25 bomber that visited Nashua Airport Monday. Mohrmann, along with two other World War II veterans, took a 20-minute flight in the warplane.

“It’s very nostalgic,” Eastman said, studying the details of the historic plane before him. “Yep, I think back at the crews that came in (for landings) … it was a little hairy at times, but we managed,” he said with a smile, referring to his trainees.

Mohrmann, an Army infantryman with the 33rd Battalion, said just before takeoff that he was looking forward to the flight.

“I’ve never been in one,” he said of the B-25. “It’ll be an experience — that’s for sure.”

Equally as excited was Bedard, who, as a Navy man who primarily escorted destroyers, rarely flew in planes during his service.

Dean Shalhoup can be reached at 594-1256, dshalhoup@nashuatelegraph.com or @Telegraph_DeanS.

Staff photo by Dean Shalhoup Artwork decorates the sides of "Maid in the Shade," the vintage World War II B-25 bomber that visited Nashua Monday as part of the Arizona Commemorative Air Force Museum's Flying Legends of Victory Tour.

Staff photo by Dean Shalhoup World War II veteran Glen Eastman holds a photo of a B-25 bomber on which he trained gunnery crews during the war. The plane, similar to the one that came to Nashua Monday, is shown flying over a desolate Myrtle Beach, S.C., where large buildings now stand.

Staff photo by Dean Shalhoup World War II veterans, from left, Dick Mohrman of Nashua, Glen Eastman of Gorham and Paul Bedard of Dunbarton line up for photos before taking a ride in the B-25 bomber, background, that visited Nashua Airport Monday.

Staff photo by Dean Shalhoup World War II Navy veteran Paul Bedard, right, chats with fellow veterans Dick Mohrman of Nashua, center, and Glen Eastman of Gorham as they awaited the touchdown of the vintage B-25 bomber at Nashua Airport Monday.