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"Optimism (light) is the power that ultimately defeats fear (darkness)."

Monday, October 17, 2005

100 Years of Flight - USAF Then and Now

On October 5th, 1905, Orville and Wilbur Wright propelled (no pun intended - OK, pun intended) the world into a new and wondrous era: FLIGHT. There is no mistaking that without this day in history, and the tireless (oh boy, another pun - these won't stop!) research, planning, and execution of these two men, there would be no United States Air Force.

Well, OK, maybe it would have happened, but these two are "Heartlanders"!!!

Hello! Dayton Ohio!! Wright-Patt AFB!!! Heartland, there is no doubt!

'Nothin' better than some down home ingenuity and American drive to succeed!

And, what's even scarier? ONE HUNDRED YEARS AND TEN DAYS later, October 15th, 2005, the Air Force deployed the first F/A-22 RAPTOR to Hill AFB, Utah. Training, shmaining ... this bird's real!!!

The Raptor is one of the most impressive engineering success stories, next to my favorite the SR-71! Let's be honest, my friends, the leaps and bounds the invention of the airplane has taken the US Air Force in 100 years is astonishing! After WWII and the Army Air Corps becoming the USAF, our proud day, September 18th, 1947, the US Air Force has been "burning up the JP4" in an amazing display of commitment, pride, and love of flight. Our great-great-great-Grandfathers, Orville and Wilbur, I am sure are most certainly proud of our achievements.

To keep these planes in the air, and always on target, there are thousands upon thousands of airmen, commissioned and noncommissioned, giving their all. As General Myers said last year, on our birthday,

"Today’s Air Force inherits a tremendous legacy: A century of flight and a history of boundless accomplishments. That legacy is in very good hands. On behalf of the Joint Chiefs, to all the men and women in the U.S. Air Force who serve, and have served, I thank you. Happy birthday U.S. Air Force!"

And there is a feeling between us all that not many can explain. We don't really have a great nickname like "Jarhead", "Grunt", "Squid", "SeaBee", or "Seal". Maybe some call us "Zoomie", but, huh? "Flyboy" ... just not gritty enough, wouldn't you say?

Do airmen actually need a gritty nickname? Do we need a movie named "Zoomie" to make us feel good? Is it important that our history, solid USAF history, only goes back 58 years? I mean, the history of the US Navy goes waaaay back, as does the US Army and United States Marine Corps. Air Force history, they ask?

Uh-huh, history, in a short extremely powerful burst! ABs ON FULL!!!

Should we be defined by our 58 years of service? Our service being that of AIR SUPERIORITY, SECURITY OF SPACE, MULTIPLE DELIVERY MECHANISMS, IMMEDIATE AND SEAMLESS DEPLOYMENT, CONSTANT READINESS, INSTANTANEOUS INFORMATION DISSEMINATION, and AIR FOCUSED THREAT COVERAGE for our fellow service members holding the line on the ground.

Once again, as General Myers so aptly stated,

"The war on terrorism is a war we must win to preserve our freedoms and protect our way of life. The U.S. Air Force has a crucial role in this war, accomplishing vital expeditionary and long-range combat missions, along with dozens of other missions critical to our national security: flying satellites, controlling airfields, maintaining our ballistic missile fleet, training technicians and leaders, and many more. Preserving our liberties takes determination, hard work and talent. The task is huge, but I stand completely confident that America’s Airmen are up to the challenge."

Are we to be defined by all this, and an ever changing future?

Well, yes, we should. And we should be damn proud of what we have accomplished in these very short 58 years, I must add!

Oh, and the one thing that General Myers is not able to say, out loud, is God Bless the United States Air Force, and her retired, separated and active duty airmen. I am sure he feels it, but in these times he is not able to say it.

Therefore, I say God Bless General Myers for being there for all of us. Thank you for protecting us and our families, and may you have continued success!

Stay Tuned to ...


At 10/18/2005 09:22:00 AM, Blogger LL said...

Oh, see now you did it, I know another Zoomie, and I will appoint you Zoomie Lite. ;)

At 10/18/2005 10:24:00 AM, Blogger LinkedInUSAF said...

ZoomieLite ... hmmm. I can take that one! :)

I am SOOOO BUMMED that JP has closed his doors. I have no place to go and be FunkieZoomie!!!!

At 10/18/2005 11:26:00 AM, Blogger LL said...

Yeah, I'm a little too serious and Kev has his serious moments too. You could try Bane, but he is so irreverent and raunchy, you might not want to leave your name there. ;)

At 3/03/2006 11:24:00 PM, Anonymous Kathy said...

I found you from CJ's blog and the title of this entry intrigued me since I am a Buckeye. Thank you for saying they are from Dayton and not NC. That is my home town and I have a little pride in that. And yes, I have been to the museum at WPAFB many a times.

At 3/03/2006 11:35:00 PM, Blogger LinkedInUSAF said...


I'm glad you stopped by and liked this piece. It is one of my favorites. Where else can you have a photo of the most historic flight right next to the most technilogically advanced aircraft in the world?!

I just love the US Air Force! :)


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