JOINT BASE ANDREWS, Md. –
The base hosted the cast and creative team of AppleTV+’s “Masters of the Air,” along with World War II veterans, Department of the Air Force senior leaders, and service men and women for a reception and special screening of the series’ first episode, Jan. 27.
Based on Donald Miller’s 2007 book of the same title, “Masters of the Air” follows Airmen of the Eighth Air Force’s 100th Bomb Group, commonly referred to as the “Bloody Hundredth,” as they conduct bombing raids over Nazi-occupied Germany and grapple with the frigid conditions and lack of oxygen during combat conducted at 25,000 feet in the air.
Secretary of the Air Force Frank Kendall expressed his gratitude to everyone for taking part in this historic event at Joint Base Andrews, especially noting the three senior living B-17 Eighth Air Force officers in the room, as well as Tuskegee Airmen and other WWII veterans and family members.
“We got a lot of great participation today,” said Kendall.“We’re extremely grateful to have our veterans here today. These men fought in the most difficult air environment in history. They built a legacy that our current Airmen and Guardians hope to live up to every single day.”
Retired Air Force Maj. John “Lucky” Luckadoo shared his own moment of recollection. After serving in WWII as a B-17 pilot in the 100th BG, he flew a total of 25 combat missions earning multiple honors, including the Distinguished Flying Cross presented to recipients for acts of heroism while in aerial flight.
“I cannot tell you what a privilege it is to be in the august (dignified) company of brass,” said Luckadoo, the 101-year-old who remains active in WWII remembrance events today. “I was extremely fortunate to have been a member that is being memorialized in the film that you’ll be seeing, ‘The Masters of the Air.’ It’s indeed an honor and a privilege, to be here - actually it’s an honor to be anywhere!”
The Air Force’s top leaders attended the reception and screening, such as Chief of Staff of the Air Force Gen. David W. Allvin, Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force JoAnne S. Bass, and commanders of Air Force major commands across the globe. Airmen of all ranks were also afforded the opportunity to experience the special screening.
“I thought the ‘Masters of the Air’ show was outstanding,” said Senior Airman Ernst Motte, audience member of the special screening with the 1st Helicopter Squadron Aviation Resource Management office at Andrews. “It was really great to meet all the cast members and a couple of the retired WWII pilots. The film really spoke to the severity of the war and made me really proud of our history.”
Kirk Saduski, Playtone producer and executive closed the evening by addressing WWII veterans and active service members in the crowd.
“It is too awful to contemplate a world in which the Allies didn’t win WWII,” said Saduski, who previously worked as executive-in-charge of the HBO series of “Band of Brothers” and co-producer of “The Pacific.”
“It is impossible to conceive of an Allied victory without the United States Air Force in Europe, and the Pacific, and the CBI (China-Burma-India) Theater,” said Saduski. “We draw the applause of the crowd. You earn the affection and admiration of our country. In the name of Playtone, Apple, and, if I may, our country – thank you.”
To view more photos of the event, visit our Masters of the Air Screening on Flickr, or read more about RAF Mildenhall's screening on their website!
*The appearance of Department of Defense personnel does not imply endorsement by the DoD, nor the Department of the Air Force.