Rare WWII plane owned by billionaire Paul Allen arrives in Tacoma

A rare World War II Russian attack plane rolled off a ship Thursday at the Port of Tacoma.

Among the last of its kind, the plane, called a “Shturmovik,” will head by truck early next week to join the Flying Heritage Collection at Paine Field in Everett. The aircraft is the only one of its type in flying condition. The plane’s fuselage and wings were transported on separate cargo trailers aboard the Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics’ Morning Composer. The plane flew to an airport near St. Petersburg late last year to be dismantled for shipment to Tacoma via Bremerhaven.

The Shturmovik (Russian for “storm bird”), was the nickname of the Ilyushin II-2, a two-person armored attack aircraft flown in World War II. The plane was produced in large volumes in the Soviet Union during the war and flew in combat on the Eastern Front against Nazi Germany.

This specific plane is made from parts discovered at a number of aircraft wrecks in the northwest regions of the former Soviet Union.

The plane will be re-assembled at Paine Field and put on display as part of a private collection owned by philanthropist and Microsoft co-founder Paul G. Allen. Founded by Paul G. Allen, the Flying Heritage Collection contains rare and legendary World War II-era aircraft, many of which are the last of their kind. The collection is operated by Friends of Flying Heritage, a nonprofit organization committed to educating the public about these rare, historic aircraft. Learn more at flyingheritage.com.