Three board members of the Flying Tiger Historical Organization accompanied three WW II Flying Tigers to Beijing for the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the ending of the Japanese war of aggression.
The Chinese flew these three veterans, (Paul Crawford, David Thompson and Bob Lee) over and back, first class, paid for all their expenses while in China and feted them at several events, awarded medals and gave them a front row seat at the September 3rd parade. After the parade on September 3rd they enjoyed a state lunch in the Great Hall of the People’s Republic of China attended by all state dignitaries and President Xi. That evening an opera was performed depicting and extoling their deeds which were accomplished with the help and cooperation of the Chinese people in WWII.
The next day they were taken by charter airline to visit Zhijiang where Anna Chennault’s museum to the Flying Tigers is located and where the Japanese signed surrender documents on August 21st prior to the official signing in Tokyo Bay on Sept 2nd, 1945.
They were also honored guests at the 5th International symposium. A marvelous play was put on by several hundred children and actors for their enjoyment.
Upon returning to Beijing, the veterans were hosted by Anna Chennault at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse where another theater production was performed for them.
Treated like kings, honored as returning heroes, it is a trip they will all remember and cherish knowing that the Chinese have not forgotten their history and the sacrifices they made on behalf of the Chinese people.