Military News

Monday, March 02, 2015

Avalon aircrew educates local students on B-52 Bomber

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. Air Force.

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 student.

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.

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