It’s been 75 years since 80 men took to the skies over the Pacific in B-25 Mitchell bombers on a daring mission to attack Tokyo, highlighting the firepower America could bring just months after the attacks on Pearl Harbor.
Colorized photos of the U.S. Army Air Forces pilots and crew before they took off for the raid have been released to mark the anniversary.
“I wanted to do this to remind people of the extraordinary courage and selflessness of these 80 men,” said Lori Lang, who in recent weeks breathed life back into the original black-and-white photos.
Lang has colorized hundreds of military photos from the U.S. and all over the world, for families or collectors, and since 2014 has managed a Facebook page for enthusiasts called “Our Colorful History.”
A Wisconsin native, she first took interest in colorizing military photos because of her great-great-great-grandfather, who served with the 26th Wisconsin Infantry Regiment during the Civil War. Her passion quickly expanded to subsequent wars and general military history.
The majority of the images she colorizes come from archives and museums.
“Many people don’t know about the Doolittle Raid and what it meant for this nation four months after Pearl Harbor,” Lang told Military.com on April 16. “In black and white, the crew photos look historic, look like they belong in the past.”
Dubbed the Doolittle Raiders after their commander, then-Lt. Col. James “Jimmy” Doolittle, the pilots and crew took off from the deck of the USS Hornet on the first airstrike against Japan on April 18, 1942.
Today, only one famed Raider remains.
Read more of this story at Military.com.