COLUMBIA, S.C. — For Sale: Used World War II bomber. Low mileage. Some water damage. Name price.
“Skunkie,” the B-25C Mitchell bomber pulled out of Lake Greenwood in 1983 and stored in Columbia since 1992, is on the block. But critics say the plane should stay in South Carolina. The Celebrate Freedom Foundation, which was given the plane by the city of Columbia, S.C., in 2007, is looking to sell the bomber to a museum or other group that can protect and display it, preferably a museum in the Southeast, said Larry Russell, the foundation’s new executive director.
“It’s a beautiful aircraft,” said Russell, standing next to the plane on a sweltering tarmac outside the historic but crumbling Curtiss-Wright Hangar at Jim Hamilton-L.B. Owens Airport in downtown Columbia. “But it’s a hunk of junk out here in the middle of nowhere,” he said.
“Our mission is to educate children, and this isn’t it.”
Museums in Georgia, North Carolina and other states have shown an interest, but Russell said no one has made a firm offer. “We think it can bring tens of thousands of dollars,” he said. “It’s a gold mine. We just need to find somebody who can take care of it.”
But critics say the plane is part of South Carolina history and a way should be found to keep it in the Palmetto State…