Tag Archives: F-16

Week in Photos, Feb. 10, 2012

 By A1C Westin Warburton

As this week comes to an end, take some time to check out this Week in Photos. Also, Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching, so don’t forget about that special someone!

Photo: U.S. Air force Capt. Thor Boland, Mike Broderick and Brandon Lavalley return from the Nevada Test and Training Range on day three of Red Flag 12-2, Jan. 25, 2012, at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. The pilots are assigned to the 4th Fighter Squadron at Hill Air Force Base, Utah. (U.S. Air Force photo by  Master Sgt. Benjamin Bloker)

Week in photos, Feb. 3, 2012

 U.S. Air Force C-130J Hercules cargo aircraft By Airman 1st Class Krystal Tomlin
U.S. Air Force Public Affairs

With a wing span a great as four F-16s the C-130 is a massive aircraft. To see such a huge piece of equipment take-off is a mesmerizing site. In this photo the Hercules soars above the cloud deck followed by the smoke of flares swirling in a frenzy of displaced air.

This photo says “The sky is the limit and the U.S. Air Force goes beyond that.” Whether we’re bringing troops and supplies into a hostile area or aid to a disaster torn nation, the Air Force gets the job done.

Jump on over to our Flickr site to see more examples of awesome airpower in our most recent Air Force Week in Photos set.

Photo: A U.S. Air Force C-130J Hercules cargo aircraft from the 146th Airlift Wing, California Air National Guard, conducts flare training off the Ventura County coast Jan. 10, 2012. The flares are used as tactical infrared countermeasures to confuse and redirect heat-seeking missiles. (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Dave Buttner)

Week in Photos, Jan. 27, 2012

Airman 1st Class Christopher Gere

Air Force Public Affairs Agency

This edition of the Air Force Week in Photos features Airmen taking to the skies and getting down in the mud. Let us know your favorites. View the entire set here.

Photo: U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker aerial refueling aircraft assigned to MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., prepare for launch as part of an “Elephant Walk” on Jan. 20, 2012. The “Elephant Walk” is a historic, uniquely Air Force term that describes the nose-to-tail, single-file taxi movements of the aircraft synonymous with the nose-to-tail trail of lumbering elephants. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech Sgt. Tanika Belfield)

Photo of the day, Nov. 15, 2011

F-16

Photo: Staff Sgt. Nathan Bolander, a maintainer from the 14th Aircraft Maintenance Unit, Misawa Air Base, Japan, works on an F-16 Fighting Falcon during an operational readiness exercise Nov. 9, 2011. The 35th Fighter Wing is going through rehearsed procedures, during a base ORE, to train for the operational readiness inspection next month. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathan Lipscomb)

“Hometown Hero” flight during AF Week Salt Lake City

There’s more to the mission of the Air Force Thunderbirds than performance, precision and indescribable skill.  Recruitment and retention are at the core of their operation, and with that comes participation in the community as well.

While the Thunderbirds are the center of attention at air shows, they like to share the spotlight with citizens of the communities that support them through their “Hometown Heroes” program. Ogden-area resident Megan Funk was one such local hero to be honored by the Thunderbirds team during Air Force Week Salt Lake City June 4.

Megan recently completed her first year as a second grade teacher. It’s early in her career as an educator, but she’s been around long enough to provide infinite life lessons to her seven- and eight-year-old students, namely “teaching young kids about giving to others.” It was this theme that brought Megan into the back seat of Thunderbird #7.

While the media hype may surround the Thunderbirds the moment they land, this particular flight was to recognize Megan as a Hometown Hero.

“You run the ride,” Thunderbird #7, “Taz,” told Megan before he briefed her on what to expect during her F-16 flight. Their signature diamond formation, the delta, rolls, turns and pulling Gs… she would experience it all.

“You’ll do what everyone will see this weekend,” he said.

Like his fellow pilots, Taz boasts an impressive flying resume, illustrated by a few notable numbers. His flying career started with the F-15 in Japan and Florida, and his F-16 career followed in Nevada where he flew with the National Guard. Taz’ flight times are no small feat: he has spent over 1500 hours in F-15 and 700 hours in the F-16.

An amusing connection was made between pilot and copilot during their pre-flight briefing, Megan mentioned that her and her husband, Curtis, had their first viewing of Top Gun the night before her flight. Taz smiled and reminisced that Top Gun was the movie he took his wife to on their first date in 1986. Megan was born just one year prior.

The Thunderbirds’ aircraft are the most mission-capable, mechanically-sound F-16s in the fleet. The maintainers and support crew are the cream of the crop: they are perfectionists in all they do, from their support to their sharp uniforms. They are primo representatives of who we are as a United States Air Force, supporting a vast mission through excellence in all they do.

Thanks to 2nd Lt. Shannon Laubenthal for writing this post and Alex Lloyd for providing the photos.