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Altus opens its gates to community

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class J. Zuriel Lee
  • 97th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs
Altus Air Force Base opened its gates to the public for the 2014 Wings of Freedom Open House on Sept. 13.

The open house allowed the general public to receive an up-close view of a wide variety of military and civilian aircraft, as well as meet with the Airmen stationed here.

"For those who don't have a chance to see what is going on in the installation, this is that opportunity to see what's going on with the Wings of Freedom, what aviation is all about, and hopefully, be inspired," said U.S. Air Force Maj. Darrick Lee, U.S. Air Force Thunderbird 12, public affairs officer. "I really want people to see the pride, precision and professionalism of the United States Air Force. They're going to see that from not only the Thunderbirds, but from the Airmen here at Altus."

The open house featured aerial demonstrations from the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds, the Air Force's premier aerial demonstration team, and the U.S. Air Force Academy Wings of Blue parachute team. There were other aerial demonstrations performed by various aircraft including Ace Makers and Trojan Phlyers.

"It's our first time out here and we didn't know what to expect, but we were overwhelmed by it. We really enjoyed walking through the airplanes and watching the show," said Kandice Crownover, who brought her family from Chillicothe, Texas.

The base also had several different aircraft from across the Air Force on display for visitors to view including a B-52 Stratofortress bomber aircraft, an F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter aircraft and a KC-10 Extender refueling aircraft.

"I think the open house will strengthen the relationship between the base and the community and they will see the hard work and dedication of the Air Force," said U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Michelle Casilla, 97th Logistics Readiness Squadron traffic management office journeyman. "It's our turn to show our appreciation for all of their support."

Photos from the 2014 Wings of Freedom Open House can be found on the 97th Air Mobility Wing Flickr site,