Gail Halvorsen, "The Candy Bomber"

Before we begin, now this is not a terrorist bomber who makes bombs out of candy. This is the story of the man who dropped candy out of an Airplane.

The Story of the Candy Bomber


Pilot Gail Halvorsen was a man who changed the lives of many children struggling through the cold war. This is his story. Gail was like any man you could think of, he was a bomber pilot who served in the second world war, but what most people do not know is that he changed lives in days. How? By a candy drop.

It’s 1948, Stalin and the USSR have made a blockade and to keep food and supplies from the allies from entering. So what did the allies do, they air dropped it. From Jun 24, 1948 – May 12, 1949, bomber pilots dropped food and supplied onto the needy of West Berlin. Mostly coal and potatoes, hardly gourmet food.

In the midst of this, Gail was flying food into West Berlin. It was during this time he witnessed the poverty and sadness of the children he saw. It was horrible, however, Gail wanted to do something about it. After sharing candy with children who had never eaten it in years, he devised a plan.

He “told them that the following day he would have enough gum for all of them, and he would drop it out of his plane. According to Halvorsen, one child asked “How will we know it is your plane?” to which Halvorsen responded that he would wiggle his wings, something he had done for his parents when he first got his pilot’s license in 1941.”

The next day the kids lined up, and identified the bomber. Gail then began to drop candy onto them from his bomber, chocolate bars and gum were the main things he dropped onto them. And from that day forward, Gail became “Uncle Wiggly Wings” and went on to do more.

“When word reached the airlift commander, Lieutenant General William H. Tunner, he ordered it expanded into Operation “Little Vittles,” a play on the airlift’s name of Operation Vittles. Operation Little Vittles began officially on September 22, 1948. Support for this effort to provide the children of Berlin with chocolate and gum grew quickly, first among Halvorsen’s friends, then to the whole squadron. As news of Operation Little Vittles reached the United States, children and candy makers from all over the US began contributing candy. By November 1948, Halvorsen could no longer keep up with the amount of candy and handkerchiefs being sent from across America.”

That is where a college stepped in. Since then, the project gained national attention. Now, we come to here, Gail now works in charity and his action live in the history books. Gail was truly a hero.


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Aye! I remember reading this story in my 5th period class!

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I remember him from my history class.

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Here is a nice video to summarize as well.

I hope you guys all really like this.

I acctualy watched a video on the Berlin Airlift from simple history, they child
Ren would gather around the “airfield” and he would drop little bags with candy that have small parashutes, pretty nice thing 🍬😀

This guy is awesome! He came to my school and talked to us at an assembly this year! :)

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