Veterans Memorial Museum welcomes Brigadier General Paul Tibbets

Brigadier General Paul Tibbets, the pilot of the famed B-29 Enola Gay, will be available on Saturday, May 5, 2001, at the Veterans Memorial Museum to autograph photos and copies of the book, “Return of the Enola Gay”. Visitors are welcome to bring their cameras along to have their pictures taken with Brigadier General Tibbets. Visitors wishing to view the Veterans Memorial Museum in addition to meeting the Brigadier General will receive a special $ 5.00 off regular adult admission.

Brigadier General Tibbets will also be at the Welk Resort Center in the lobby of the Champagne Theater from 11:00 am to 12:00 pm and 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM on Friday, May 4, 2001. StoneBridge Village, a gated resort community located just West of Branson, sponsors the visit by Brigadier General Paul Tibbets as part of their contribution to Branson’s appreciation for all veterans. David Bean of StoneBridge Village comments, “It’s a privilege to bring Brigadier General Paul Tibbets to Branson. His visit to the Welk Resort and the Veterans Memorial Museum gives all of our visitors an opportunity to meet and talk with an important participant in American history.”

Tibbets served in both the Atlantic and Pacific theaters during World War II. He led the first daylight bombing raid against the Nazis and the first 100 plane raids against Germany. In September of 1944, Tibbets was assigned the task of recruiting, organizing, and training the personnel to drop the atomic bomb. Tibbets flew the first atomic mission against enemy forces when he piloted the B-29 named after his mother, Enola Gay. That mission took place on August 6, 1945 when the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, which set in motion the end of World War II with Japan.

Fred Hoppe, owner of the Veterans Memorial Museum, says, “The museum is a tribute to our veterans and their courage; we invite our visitors stop in and honor a true American hero, Brigadier General Paul Tibbets. We’re grateful that his strength of purpose saved the lives and freedoms of so many people.” The museum, on West Highway 76 in Branson, is easy to find as there is a full-sized World War II P-51 Mustang Fighter Plane located in the front of the building.

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