EL CENTRO, Calif. — FOX 5’s Tabitha Lipkin flew along with the US Navy Blue Angels ahead of a particular event honoring an American WWII hero.
The 49th annual El Centro Airshow that includes the Blue Angels is scheduled to happen Saturday from Vraciu Area, an airfield that previously had no identify. El Centro performs a central position in naval aviation with a history courting again to WWII. At the moment, Alexander Vraciu was reigning as the Navy’s prime WWII Ace fighter.
“Naval avation has grown on the shoulders of pilots like him and his experiences getting naval aviation to where we’re immediately,” Blue Angels narrator Lt. Carry Rickoff stated.
Vraciu was greatest recognized for capturing down six Japanese dive bombers in eight minutes. He additionally survived two of his plane carriers being torpedoed and was pressured to parachute to security twice when he had to ditch his “Grumman F6F Hellcat.”
In 1946 the Blue Angels shaped as a solution to increase morale and raise the public interest in naval aviation, a practice that continues at the moment.
1946 is identical yr NAF El Centro was taken over by the Navy. Vraciu educated in El Centro in the 50s after the conflict, profitable the Fleet Air Gunnery Unit annual weapons meet with the very best aerial marksman score ever as a commanding officer.
“We come out here for a couple of reasons,” Rickoff stated of NAF El Centro. “The climate out right here is right for us to train … Pilots require one hundred twenty demonstration flights earlier than a public demonstration. Additionally, (on this) air area we are sort of out of everyone’s approach and we will get the work executed that we’d like.”
F-18 hornets prime out at about 12-hundred mph 3-occasions the velocity of the F-6F Hellcat Vraciu typically flew.
“I feel he can be very excited. Going back to the F6F hellcat, that was our very first aircraft. The Blue Angels flew F6F Hellcats for the primary couple of months once they first flew again in 1946, and I feel he’s be ecstatic to see his aircraft flying over his area seventy three years later.”
Vraciu was generally known as “indestructible,” and his legacy plain. Now his contribution to naval aviation will stay on by means of the air exhibits for years to return.