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  B-17G-105-VE Flying Fortress Serial Number 44-85790  
USAAF

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Justin Taylan 2011

Aircraft History
Built by by Vega under contract for Boeing. Constructors Number 8699. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as B-17G-105-VE Flying Fortress 44-85790.

Postwar
During 1947, this B-17 was purchased by Art Lacey of Milwaukie, OR. On March 8, this B-17 departed Altus Air Force Base in Oklahoma to Portland, OR, arriving on March 10. Disassembled into at least four pieces, the bomber was transported to Lacy's Gas Station, SE McLoughlin Blvd, Milwaukie, Oregon.

Display
During September 1947 and reassembled above Lacy's Gas Station on pylons above the gas station allowing vehicles to park underneath. Nicknamed "Lacey Lady" by Art Lacey. Also known locally as the "B-17 Gas Station".

Later, the gas station relocated down the street to 13515 SE McLoughlin Blvd where it was installed on permanent pylons above the ground. When Art Lacey passed away on December 27, 2000, his daughter, Punky Lacey Scott took over the buisness and owns the property and this B-17. Today, the gas station portion is closed and the location is known as The Bomber Restaurant.

Restoration
During 1996, the nose section was removed and is under restoration at the Wings of Freedom Showcase indoors also on the same property. During 2012, the engines were removed. During 2014 the rest of the aircraft was removed by the B-17 Alliance Foundation for restoration.

References
USAF Serial Number Search Results - B-17G-105-VE Flying Fortress 44-85790
"85790 to Art Lacey of Milwaukee, OR 1947 and ferried from Altus AFB, OK to Portland, OR Mar 8-10, 1947. By Sept 1947 was on display above Lacy's Bomber Gas Station in Milwaukie, Oregon. Reported still there in 1980. Moved to Lacey's Bomber Restaurant in 1990. 44-85790 nose section was removed in 1996, restored and now at the Wings of Freedom Showcase, Milwaukie, Oregon. Rest of aircraft still at the gas station. The gas station is now closed but The Bomber Restaurant at the same site is still open. Engines removed 2012. Airframe removed 2014 by B-17 Alliance Group of Aurora for rebuild to flying condition."
FindAGrave - Arthur William “Art” Lacey (obituary)
TheBomber.com / B-17 Wings of Freedom Showcase
B-17 Alliance Foundation

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Last Updated
December 21, 2018

 

Tech Info
B-17
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