LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The Thunderbirds and Blue Angels demonstration squadrons teamed up to show support for frontline workers battling COVID-19. Tuesday, they flew over New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Over the next two weeks, the teams will fly over U.S. cities hardest-hit by the pandemic during their “America Strong” collaborative salute.
“We’re excited to fly over cities across America as our way of saying thanks to the healthcare workers, first responders, and all the people who selflessly run into the breach working to keep America strong,” said Gen. Dave Goldfein, chief of staff of the Air Force, and Adm. Michael Gilday, chief of naval operations, in a joint press release. “This is also our way of showing that we are all in this together and that America’s spirit will prevail.”
The flyovers are scheduled every one to two days until mid-May. This means some cities will only see the Blue Angels, some will only see the Thunderbirds and others will see both. Leaders implemented this plan to reach as many Americans as possible.
Both squadrons stressed the importance of spectators adhering to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention social distancing guidelines. They also noted they’ll be keeping personnel and communities safe through air-to-air refueling and no scheduled stops while en route.
Just a couple of weeks ago, the Thunderbirds flew over Las Vegas in a brilliant show of support for local healthcare workers, first responders and others. They also flew over parts of Colorado on April 18.
The Thunderbirds and Blue Angels have canceled several air shows due to the pandemic.
The press release noted that upcoming flyovers will not only salute everyone on the frontlines, they’ll help both teams maintain proficiency by fulfilling “critical training requirements” at “no additional cost to taxpayers.”
A list of cities will be released soon.