by Maj. Ben Sakrisson,
Pacific Air Forces Public Affairs
3/2/2015 - MELBOURNE, Australia -- Crew
members from a U.S. Air Force B-52 Stratofortress bomber, in town for
the 2015 Australian International Airshow and Aerospace & Defence
Exposition at Avalon Airport, visited with students at Lara Primary
School Feb. 25 and answered questions about flying and life in the U.S.
It was the first time in a number of years that aircrew members were
able to visit the local school during the airshow, according to teachers
at the school.
"The students were really wrapped to meet a U.S. air crew as they are
viewed as celebrities who fly such awesome aircraft," said Barb Whelan, a
school teacher. "We were really impressed with the crew's friendliness
and how well they interacted with students and staff at Lara Primary."
Approximately 250 students ages 8-12 asked dozens of surprisingly
detailed questions of the crew about their experiences and specifics
about the bomber.
"They have been to so many places around the world I have forgotten them," said Kiara, a student from the audience.
"I also [learned] they wear three different uniforms to be worn for different things," said Sienna, another student.
"It was an amazing experience and I [learned] a lot about the B-52
bomber; I hope that they might come again," said Josh, a primary
The visit was also a great experience for the B-52 crew.
"The kids were really intelligent and asked great questions," said Maj.
Kevin Carrigan, a B-52 weapons systems officer from the 96th Bomb
Squadron at Barksdale Air Force Base, La. "They were very impressive for
how young they were."
Visits such as this are an important outreach venue for airshow
participants, as it enables them to educate students in much greater
detail than would be possible at the airshow itself on specifically what
their aircraft is used for.
Approximately 100 Airmen are showcasing the capabilities of U.S. air
assets, including the B-52 Stratofortress, F-22 Raptor, F-16 Fighting
Falcon, RQ-4 Global Hawk, KC-135 Stratotanker and P-8A Poseidon at the
AIA15 public airshow.