The Best Years of Our Lives
French title : Les plus belles années de notre vie
Dana Andrews (Fred Derry)
Harold Russell (Homer Parrish)
Fredric March (Al Stephenson)
William Wyler's classic film follows the lives of three American servicemen as they transition to civilian life following WWII.
Following their return from overseas, the men initially try to fly home via commercial airlines, but there are no seats available.
Registration NC10201, c/n 42904.
Undeterred, they take a "space available" hop on an Air Transport Command B-17.
Actually Boeing B-17F s/n 42-3360 just registered as N67974.
(Center) Some Consolidated B-24 Liberator (high wing & twin tail) are clearly visible alongside numerous B-17s.
A number of stripped P-39s appear, awaiting the scrappers torch.
Also being scrapped are a couple of rare YB-40 gunships. These modified B-17Fs had additional gun mounts and were intended to act as escorts accompanying flights of bombers on their way to and from the target. A second top turret was installed in the radio compartment. Although the second turret has been removed from these aircraft, the shortened fairing ahead of the radio room (and just behind the open life raft compartments above the wing), identify them as YB-40s.
Only a handfull dozens were built and only 48 sorties were credited. None of the XB-40 nor the YB-40 was christened Lucy Belle as seen here.
Towards the end of the film, Fred Derry reconsiders his life options while strolling amongst veteran aircraft being scrapped in a boneyard.
S/n 42-3463. This Flying Fortress was built by Douglas and delivered at Denver in June 1943. She spent all her life in the USA, flying for training center (and so having huge digit for quick identification by ground observers, as lot of instruction flying machine).
Eventually sold to Reconstruction Finance Corporation (a United States government agency) for scrap metal on 19/6/45. Filmed at Ontario for movie with nose art “Round ? Trip” and scoreboard added by studio.