A Delaware Air National Guard C-130 aircraft from the 166th Airlift Wing will perform a flyover of Delaware Stadium Saturday, Sept. 10, 2011 before kickoff of the University of Delaware v. West Chester football game.
The flyover is scheduled to occur at the playing of the last note of the National Anthem, about 6:05 p.m., and just prior to the kickoff during the University of Delaware's Service Appreciation Night. When fans look up and to the north on Saturday evening they will observe the approach of a single gray C-130 Hercules transport aircraft.
Two of the five aircrew flying aboard the C-130 will be University of Delaware alumni. The aircraft commander is Major Troy Bockius, a 2000 U.D. graduate with a B.A. in geography. He was captain of the U.D. Cross-Country team, and a member of the All-East Track Team. The navigator is Lieutenant Colonel John Ptak, a 1984 U.D. graduate with a B.S. in criminal justice and a minor in psychology.
Based in New Castle, Delaware, the C-130s of the Delaware Air Guard unit have flown to six of the seven continents, to numerous airfields in Afghanistan, and just last month to the northernmost inhabited spot on earth next to the North Pole. These aircraft carry troops and supplies into combat, bring home wounded American warriors, and conduct worldwide humanitarian missions.
This week also has a historical significance as it marks the 65th Anniversary of the founding of the Delaware Air National Guard on Sept. 6, 1946.
This is the third year in a row that Delaware Air Guard C-130 aircraft have participated in these flyovers.
Two previous Delaware Stadium flyovers by Delaware Air Guard C-130s:
- Sept. 11, 2010: before the kickoff of the U.D. v. South Dakota State University football game during U.D. Band Day/Service Appreciation Day.
- Sept. 19, 2009: Two C-130s performed a flyover before kickoff of the U.D. v. Delaware State University football game for their first regular season matchup, kicking off the 'Route 1 Rivalry' of the state's only Division I football programs. The winner of the contest was awarded the inaugural "First State Cup".
"Our aircrew and our entire unit are honored to have another opportunity to perform an aerial display of our C-130 Hercules transport aircraft over Delaware Stadium during this special event marking the 10-year anniversary of the terrorist attacks of 9/11. As we fly over Tubby Raymond Field we will join with the fans inside Delaware Stadium to honor the memories of so many fellow citizens who lost their lives that day," said Col. Jonathan Groff, commander, 166th Airlift Wing.
In the 10 years since Sept. 11, 2001, Airmen of the Delaware Air National Guard have completed well over 1,500 individual deployments to combat zones in Afghanistan, Iraq, and in other nations in Southwest Asia and also closer to home to support humanitarian relief missions.
FAST COMPARISON FACTS:
- Delaware Air Guard, 166th Airlift Wing emblem: Blue Hen astride a globe. Colors: Blue and Gold.
- University of Delaware football helmet: Winged pattern. Colors: Blue and Gold.
- Delaware Air Guard C-130 H model aircraft: delivered factory fresh to the unit in the mid-1980s.
- Delaware Stadium: erected in 1952.
- Lockheed C-130H aircraft: Flown by five-person aircrew; maximum capacity 92 troops or 42,000 pounds.
- Tubby Raymond Field: Holds 22 football players during game time, plus half-a-dozen referees.
- Delaware Air Guard: Founded 65 years ago this week on Sept. 6, 1946, with a membership of 1,100 Citizen-Airmen.
- University of Delaware: Founded in 1743, with a current student enrollment of 16,740.
- Date the Airmen of the Delaware Air National Guard first saw combat: early 1940s over the skies of Europe and in the Burma-India-China Theater as members of the U.S. Army Air Forces.
- Date the University of Delaware first fielded a football squad: 1896.
This release is in the public domain, and any part may be used as written.
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Media contact: Tech. Sgt. Benjamin Matwey
Public Affairs Specialist
166th Airlift Wing, Delaware Air National Guard
2600 Spruance Drive, New Castle, DE 19720
Cell 302-593-2126 - office 302-323-3369
Unit website: http://www.166aw.ang.af.mil