Though not exactly dainty, the Lacey Lady still sits pretty above the parking lot of the Bomber Restaurant. One of some 50 B-17 Flying Fortresses in existence, she's the centerpiece of the eatery and a testament to the gumption of her namesake, pilot Art Lacey, who brought her to Milwaukie, Ore., in 1947.
Lacey bought the bomber from an air force base in Oklahoma and set out to fly her to Oregon. "He had flown P-51 Mustangs, but never a B-17," says Punky Scott, Lacey's daughter. "That's why he crashed the first one." He then talked the base into selling him a second one at a deep discount.
The restaurant serves more than classic Americana. The two patties of the Bomber Burger come topped with bacon, ham, cheese, and peanut butter. The Wings of Freedom showcase, a modest World War II museum next door, houses the B-17's nose. (503) 659-9306, thebomber.com.
Photography by Don Frank
This article was first published in January 2010. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.