Kickstarter campaign launches Sept. 30 to fund flight-test program

WICHITA, Kan. – In a show of support for a historic project, three distinguished individuals spoke on behalf of the B-29 Doc restoration project. The Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center arranged for Apollo 13 crew members Jim Lovell and Fred Haise, as well as former SR-71 pilot Buz Carpenter, to offer their thoughts on the importance of restoring, preserving and sharing history through efforts such as Doc’s restoration.

“It’s always important to get people to volunteer and help fund the restoration of these projects because it’s a way of people contributing to the younger generation,” said Apollo 13 astronaut Jim Lovell. Fellow Apollo 13 astronaut Fred Haise added “… if you do not get these kind of projects done, history will frankly disappear, except on paper.”

Doc, the historic warbird that will soon become the second operational B-29 Superfortress, has now entered the flight-test stage. All four engines were successfully fired up on Sept. 18 for the first time since 1956. But additional funding is needed to support this phase.

Doc’s Friends, the nonprofit, volunteer-powered organization restoring the B-29, is launching a Kickstarter campaign that will go live Wednesday, Sept. 30. The group will have 30 days to reach their stated goal of $137,500. Costs associated with this amount will be detailed on the official Kickstarter page.

“I would encourage all of you…to support at whatever level you can support, airplanes such as Doc that have such a wonderful legacy, and keep it alive,” said former SR-71 pilot Buz Carpenter.

Further comments from Lovell, Haise and Carpenter were captured on camera and will be viewable on the Doc’s Friends Kickstarter page.