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Utah's Gail Halvorsen, aka the 'Berlin Candy Bomber,' celebrates 100th birthday

Candy bomber turns 100
Posted at 8:49 AM, Oct 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-10 23:21:47-04

SALT LAKE CITY — Retired Air Force Col. Gail "Hal" Halvorsen, perhaps better known as the "Berlin Candy Bomber," celebrated his 100th birthday Saturday, and Governor Gary Herbert declared the day as "Gail S. Halvorsen Recognition Day" in his honor.

Halvorsen and his crew saw that after the war the children of Berlin had very little, and would often ask them for pieces of chewing gum or candy. After not having enough candy for each child one day, he promised that he would later have a treat for every one of the kids, and he would drop them off of a plane.

Halvorsen kept his promise. He and his crew gathered their spare candy one night and dropped the treats off of their C-54 cargo plane. The operation was later made official and was dubbed “Operation Little Vittles” in Sept. of 1948. Soon children and candy makers throughout the United States began contributing candy for the operation.

Hill Air Force Base tweeted Happy Birthday wishes to Halvorsen.

Governor Herbert also tweeted birthday greetings for Halvorsen and released a proclamation, declaring Saturday as "Gail S. Halvorsen Recognition Day" in Utah.

For photos of "The Berlin Candy Bomber" in action, click here.

For an in depth interview with Halvorsen, check out the time he was a guest on 3 Questions with Bob Evans.