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RdrPatch    17bmbgrp

Notice how the Doolittle Raiders patch on left takes many features from the 17th Bombardment Wing; the seven maltese crosses are from World War I, where the 17th fought in seven major battles. Notice the motto, "Toujours Au Danger" which means "Ever Into Danger." Jimmy jokingly mentioned that it could also mean "Always In Trouble." The circle of pictures in the left photo denoting the four squadrons in the 17th at the time, was represented with a picture. The 34th is on top right, but is turned around. Didn't fit on patch very well turned the other way.

17bwptch PtchOldNew

Here are some more wing patches, above. The 17th Bomb Wing is more well known than most people think. It showed up in the movie Space Cowboys with Clint Eastwood and Tommy Lee Jones. As the four veterans are walking into the NASA building to begin training, look at the left (as you're looking at it) side of Tommy Lee's jacket. A 17th Bomb Wing patch right there!

  34OldNew WWII34

On left above are two 34th Bomb Squadron patches, an old and new one. To the right is World War II patch. The "thunderbird" didn't change much, did it?


The 17th Pursuit Group activated at March Field in California in 1931, but guess who commanded March Field from 1931 to 1936? You guessed it. That's Hap Arnold in the photo above. It became the 17th Attack Group in 1933, and look at the shield on his airplane - seven maltese crosses (one cross is hidden behind him). In 1939, it received the title it would carry through World War II: the 17th Bombardment Group. Every Doolittle Raider was from this Group.