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Photo of North American B-25J Mitchell Mk. III

 Click on one of the thumbnails below to access the 22 photos of this aircraft.

  • Status: On display
  • Airworthiness: Airworthy (flown regularly)
  • Type: Bomber
  • Built: 1945
  • Serial Number: 45-8883
  • Construction Number: 108-47734
  • Civil Registration: C-GCWM
  • Current Markings: RAF VO-F
  • Length: 52 ft 11 in
  • Wingspan: 67 ft 7 in
  • Power: 1700 hp each
  • Engine: 2 x Wright Cyclone R-2600-29A
  • Maximum Speed: 272 mph
  • Cruising Speed: 230 mph
  • Service Ceiling: 24,200 ft
  • Range: 1,350 miles

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Aircraft Description

The North American B-25 was ordered straight from the drawing board in September 1939. The first production aircraft flew in August 1940 and B-25s went into service with the US Air Corps, towards the end of 1940.

B-25Bs took part in one of the most famous actions of WW II, the first long range bombing of Japan in April 1942, led by Colonel Jimmy Doolittle. Sixteen B-25Bs took off from the deck of the aircraft carrier USS Hornet, 800 miles off the coast of Japan and bombed Tokyo and other Japanese cities.

B-25C and Ds (Mitchell IIs) flew with the RAF Desert Airforce, in North Africa 1942-3 and later in intruder operations over Belgium, France and Holland, in 1943-44. During D-Day and afterwards, B-25Js (Mitchell IIIs) saw action over North West Europe, in 1944-45. A large number of Canadian airmen and ground crew served with the RAF in these actions. About 800 B-25Js were modified with a solid nose that contained eight 0.50 calibre machine guns. Together with the other ten guns mounted, this raised the armament to eighteen guns and made the B-25J the most lethal gunship of WW II.

B-25 Mitchells fought in every theatre of the Second World War and operated in many roles, including tactical bombing, tank busting and anti shipping strikes. B-25s served with the RCAF between 1944 and 1962 - most of them after WW II. 164 aircraft served with seven RCAF squadrons in the light bomber, navigation training, photo reconnaissance and transport roles.

Eventually, about 10,030 B-25s were built between 1940 and 1945 - 4,390 of them being the “J” model. The B-25 series served with the United States military, the RAF, RCAF, RAAF, as well as the airforces of many other nations.

The Museum's B-25J Mitchell was assembled in Kansas City in early 1945, but never saw military service. It was operated as a civilian transport for over 25 years and the Museum found it abandoned at Wilmington Airport, Delaware, in 1975. After repairs, the aircraft was flown to the Museum, where it underwent extensive restoration. The aircraft now displays the markings of a B-25J of RAF No. 98 Squadron, which fought over North West Europe during 1944-45. It is dedicated to the Canadians who flew with that squadron.

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All photos are licensed by their respective owners.
Canadian Warplane Heritage is a registered Canadian charity (No. 10686 8599 RR0001)

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