The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds have finalized their 2015 show schedule. In its 62nd season, the team is slated to perform in Owensboro on September 11-13, 2015.
Mayor Ron Payne commented that, “what has proven to be a great airshow over the last three years is now coming of age with the addition of the Air Force’s Thunderbirds. I welcome everyone to come out and share in this great performance by America’s premier jet demonstration team.” The Mayor went on to compliment City Special Events Director Tim Ross for his work in bringing the Thunderbirds to Owensboro.
The flying unit, officially known as the U.S. Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron, will perform its first public flyover of 2015 at the opening of Super Bowl XLIX in Phoenix, Ariz., Feb. 1.
he release of the show season is good news for the squadron’s Airmen, who normally spend up to 220 days a year traveling. Aside from performing impressive aerial demonstrations, Thunderbirds Airmen visit with local schools and hospitals, hold enlistment ceremonies and conduct media engagements to speak with people about the Air Force.
“We are extremely excited to represent the Air Force during the upcoming season” said Lt.Col. Greg Moseley, the Thunderbirds’ current commander and lead pilot. “Our newest team members have been training rigorously to ensure we execute our mission safely while showing the public what their Airmen can do.”
Moseley is expected to depart the squadron after a change-of-command ceremony scheduled to occur 7 Jan. LtCol Christopher Hammond, an experienced fighter pilot with more than 2,000 flight hours, will lead the squadron for the 2015 and 2016 demonstration seasons.
“It’s an honor to share the story of U.S. Airmen serving at locations around the globe,” said Hammond. “We hope these stories inspire others to learn more about aviation and opportunities to serve.”
The Thunderbirds were formed in 1953, and since have been charged with demonstrating the professionalism of Airmen and the capabilities of modern airpower. The 2015 season marks the 33rd year the squadron has performed in the F-16 Fighting Falcon.
Assigned to Air Combat Command, the squadron is composed of nearly 130 Airmen serving in more than two dozen Air Force job specialties.
The primary product of that teamwork is a Thunderbirds aerial demonstration, which includes approximately 40 maneuvers, featuring formation flying and solo routines. The entire show, including the beginning ground ceremony, lasts about one hour. A typical air show travel season extends from March to November.
To learn more about the Thunderbirds, visit www.afthunderbirds.com.