Archive

ShareThis Page
Fall fly-by: Blue Angels stop in Unity to discuss 2015 show | TribLIVE.com
Westmoreland

Fall fly-by: Blue Angels stop in Unity to discuss 2015 show

Tribune-Review
| Wednesday, November 26, 2014 12:01 a.m.
gtrBlueAngels4112614
Sean Stipp | Trib Total Media
One of the Navy Blue Angels’ F/A-18 Hornets arrives at Arnold Palmer Regional Airport in Unity on Tuesday, Nov. 25, 2014.
gtrBlueAngels2112614
Sean Stipp | Trib Total Media
Capt. Corrie Mays, the Blue Angels’ events coordinator, greets Arnold Palmer Regional Airport officials upon arriving from Detroit on Tuesday, Nov. 25, 2014.
gtrBlueAngels112614
Sean Stipp | Trib Total Media
One of the Navy Blue Angels’ F/A-18 Hornets is guided into a hangar on Tuesday, Nov. 25, 2014, at Arnold Palmer Regional Airport in Unity.
gtrBlueAngels3112614
Sean Stipp | Trib Total Media
We try our hardest wherever we are to have as much contact as we can with as many people as we can,” said Capt. Corrie Mays of the Navy Blue Angels.

Two members of the Navy’s Blue Angels left an airfield outside Detroit in a Boeing F/A-18 Hornet on Tuesday morning and landed about 200 miles away at Arnold Palmer Regional Airport near Latrobe half an hour later.

Capts. Jeff Kuss and Corrie Mays, who are among the precision flying team’s newest recruits, have been flying from one community to another to prepare for next year’s slate of air shows. The airport in Unity was their final stop before heading back to their base in Pensacola, Fla., to take some time off for Thanksgiving.

During the preliminary airfield visits, which last only a few hours, Kuss and Mays meet with airport officials to discuss their needs for the upcoming show.

The Blue Angels are accompanied to each show by more than 40 people and plenty of special equipment, and they work with airports to make sure everything is in place for their show, Kuss said.

“We’re going to all the show sites all over the country for the next couple months,” he said.

Mays is the Blue Angels’ events coordinator. Calls and emails from airport officials around the country will fill her time during the next few months as airports prepare for the year’s shows.

“To be able to meet them face-to-face before we begin is very nice,” she said.

Both captains joined the Blue Angels in September.

Kuss, a Navy pilot who served aboard an aircraft carrier during the war in Afghanistan, will be the air show narrator during his first year with the Blue Angels, relaying the action to the crowd. He expects to take to the sky to perform in the shows by his second year.

Joining the Blue Angels, he said, is a dream come true.

“To have a chance to represent my brothers and sisters in the Navy and Marine Corps is a complete honor. It’s been a dream of mine for a long time,” he said.

Mays agreed.

“It’s really special. We’re super excited,” she said.

Mays, a Marine Corps pilot who has served in the Middle East, helps coordinate the shows.

“We try our hardest wherever we are to have as much contact as we can with as many people as we can,” she said.

The Blue Angels have been performing at the Westmoreland County airport on and off since the 1970s, said Gabe Monzo, executive director of the county airport authority.

“When you have somebody like the Blue Angels come in, it’s a big part of what the recruiting does to try to bring people into the Navy and into the Marines, and that’s what we’re trying to help them with,” he said.

Arnold Palmer Regional Airport’s next air show will be June 20 and 21.

Jacob Tierney is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-836-6646 or jtierney@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.