Grissom to host Air and Space Expo in 2019

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Harrison Withrow
  • 434th ARW Public Affairs

The skies over north-central Indiana will be filled with the sound of jet noise Sept. 7-8, 2019 as the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds come to headline the Grissom Air & Space Expo.

The Thunderbirds are the Air Force’s premier aerial demonstration team and they will be joined by other military and civilian aviation acts for the two-day expo.

“The Thunderbirds a big draw, and we are thrilled to have them headline our event,” said Douglas Hays, 434th Air Refueling Wing public affairs operations chief.

Lt. Col. Brian Thompson, 434th Operations Group chief of standardization and evaluation, is the project officer for the event. He’s partnered with Lt. Col. Billy Werth, 434th ARW flight safety officer, and part-time aerial performer, as well as other key staff agencies to form the backbone of this community relations event.

“We’ve got an aggressive team working diligently to ensure we put on the best show possible,” Said Col. Larry Shaw, 434th ARW commander. “We’ve been laying the foundation for this event for six months already, working behind the scenes, getting paperwork in place to ensure we are doing things right.”

The event will be the first air show type event held at Grissom since 2003, and will be free and open to the public.

“This is a great way for our neighbors to visit and see what their taxpayer dollars are spent on,” Hays said. “We’ll have a variety of both civilian and military acts as well as aircraft and hardware static displays.”

“We’ll be putting out additional information of the course of the coming year,” Hays said. “We are creating a web page where people can get the latest information they need, and we encourage people to follow us on social media as well.”

“We had an estimated 60,000 people per day for our last air show,” Hays said. “So expect a lot of our friends and neighbors to join us again.”

The 434th ARW is the largest KC-135R Stratotanker unit in the Air Force Reserve Command. The Citizen Airmen from the Hoosier Wing routinely deploy around the world in support of the Air Force mission.

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