Sino-American cultural activities kick off in Quzhou for 82nd Doolittle Raid commemoration – Travel And Tour World

The 82nd Anniversary of the Great Rescue of the Doolittle Raid was commemorated through non-governmental cultural exchange activities between the US and China. These events, themed “Let the friendship forged by blood and flame be passed down from generation to generation,” were held at the Doolittle Raid Memorial Hall located at 9 Shuiting Street, Kecheng District, Quzhou City, Zhejiang Province, from April 17 to 19.

During a joint welcome banquet in San Francisco on November 15, 2023, Chinese President Xi Jinping highlighted the heroism of Chinese soldiers and civilians during the Anti-Japanese War. He recounted how they bravely rescued American pilots, including those from the Doolittle Raid, and how their descendants continue to visit the memorial in Quzhou to honor those courageous acts.

Following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on April 18, 1942, 80 American pilots, including Lieutenant Colonel Doolittle, launched a retaliatory bombing raid on Japan in B-25 Mitchell bombers. Facing fuel shortages on their return, they parachuted over China, where they were heroically rescued by local Chinese, prompting severe Japanese retaliation in the Zhejiang and Jiangxi provinces.

Members of the Doolittle Raiders Association and their descendants have repeatedly visited China since the 1990s to honor and find the families of their rescuers.

On the morning of April 17, Susan Ozuk, the daughter of the navigator of Plane No. 3, returned to the site in Zhangcun Township, Jiangshan City, Quzhou, where her father found refuge 82 years earlier. She had previously donated funds for the renovation and preservation of this historic location.

Since 2016, the Children of Doolittle Raiders Association has fostered peace and friendship by sponsoring scholarships at Quzhou Second Middle School and organizing English essay competitions about the Doolittle Raid. A “friendship tree” planted by Chinese and American friends in 2015 stands as a vibrant symbol of ongoing friendship and cooperation, accompanied by a stone tablet commemorating the enduring legacy of the Doolittle Raid and the evolving Sino-American relationship.

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