|By Leo Cachat|
We were excited to get to see the Canadian Forces CF-18 Hornet demo again - the third time in two weeks going back to the Cape Girardeau and the St. Louis shows, and Jerry Conley's DeHavilland Vampire, a jet none of us had ever seen fly. The other performers were annual favorites at this show, including Michael Kennedy in his BT-13 Vultee, Chip Lamb in his T-28 Trojan, MO CAF wing B-25 Mitchell Show Me, John Lohmar in his T-6 Radial Velocity, the Kansas City Dawn Patrol, the Friends of Jenny, the Super Hornet West Coast TAC Demo, the U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute team and the RCAF Skyhawks parachute team.
Thank you to all the organizers, volunteers and performers who make this event possible each year. We especially thank all veterans, past and present, for their service.
The Kansas City Dawn Patrol and Friends of Jenny bring World War I-era aviation alive:
The CF-18 demo flown by Capt. Ryan "Roid" Kean was an unbelievable demonstration of power and speed, showcasing what this versatile fighter/attack aircraft can do. He concluded his performance with one of the classiest gestures I've ever witnessed - flying the flag of the United States as he taxied back to the ramp. He then came over to sign posters for what I think was every person who attended the show. I took some photos of the first couple people who lined up. I checked back after about an hour and he was still signing and had a long line waiting for him. A true class act and a credit to his country - well done Capt. Kean.
The CAF MO Wing crew flew their B-25 Show Me with John Lohmar in his AT-6 Radial Velocity to salute World War II veterans.
Michael Kennedy and Chip Lamb flew gracefully in their Valiant and Trojan primary and advanced trainers, demonstrating what new pilots had to learn before hopping into the fighters of their days.
The Vampire demo flown by Jerry Conley was also excellent. Conley kept the aircraft right in front of the crowd most of the time, allowing for some great photo opportunities of his unique airplane along with some great play by play narration as he flew the demo.
F/A-18 Super Hornet and the Golden Knights performed with the high-intensity and skill we've come to expect, and the crowd was quite appreciative!
The RCAF Skyhawks were very impressive in their demonstrations, thrilling the crowd with their formations and their late breaks before touching down in front of the crowd.