Thunder Over the Valley Air Show and Open House - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Thunder Over the Valley Air Show and Open House

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Thunder Over the Valley Air Show and Open House

Fathers day at the Vienna Air Reserve Station held special meaning for a grandson and his 92 year old grandfather Jim Wyant a World War Two Veteran who was a ball turret gunner on a B-17 and flew 33 missions. Wyant said, "My grandson brought me out so I could see a B-17 again, and I really enjoyed it."

His grandson Matthew Korb a TechSergeant with the 910th Airlift Wing who lives in Wadsworth said, "Several years ago we went to the Maps Air Museum in Canton and they had brought in a B-17. It was the first time my grandfather really told me any stories about the war. To see his eyes light up then. I knew if I could give him that experience again it would be great.  And to be able to do it on Father's Day is sucn an incredible, incredible experience.

Other fathers brought daughters to enjoy the airbase and airshow. Robert Broadstone and Sheri Lewis from Warren brought their girls. Broadstone said, "We were enjoying the air show together. It's just really fun."  Lewis added, "We love the air show. It's a little more special because it is on Father's Day this year, so they are definitely enjoying their day with dad."

The 910th Airlift Wing and it's mission were on display for everyone to see. Lt. Colonel John Boccieri said, "It's a fantastic demonstration of our capabilities both as a military and a demonstration to taxpayers the type of training we do out here."

The Thunerbirds show was moved up to 1:00 pm. Master Sgt. Bob Barko Jr., Superintendent of 910th Public Affairs emphasized that safety of guests comes first. Barko said, "If there is a chance we've got a storm coming in here, the Air Boss will make adjustments and get as much show as we safely can before Mother Nature roars. This is the 70th Anniversary of the U.S. Air Force."

The Thunderbirds are known for flying at speeds of 500 miles an hour, 3 feet apart in various formations. A team of 120 work to put on an air show. Captain Sara Harper, Thunderbird #12 Public Affairs Officer for the team said, "Most of our pilots have been in the Air Force for 10 years. To apply for the team they must have 750 hours. All of our pilots have been in combat down range, and most of them are instructor pilots as well.

At 1:00 p.m. the pilots were introduced and their planes were on the runway ready to take off, but the rain started. Visibility is always a factor in air shows. The pilots remained ready to perform with their engines running. At 2:00 p.m. more storm clouds moved in, there was heavy rain fall, then thunder and lightening so the show was cancelled.

Although the jets remained grounded and the only thunder over the valley was mother natures thunder, people here say the rain didn't dampen their fathers day. Stuart Eloph and his family took pictures a distance away with the planes in the background. Eloph said, "The rain doesn't matter as long as I've got my kids here and it's Father's Day, there is no other place I'd rather be."




 

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