A fun event just a bit ago as the Colorado National Guard and 140th Wing did a flyby of hospitals all along the Colorado Front Range. I was unfortunately almost directly under them and light was horrendous but still fun to see and a great way to honor the police, fire departments, and hospital workers keeping us safe during the pandemic.
Not the usual type of birds I photograph – these guys were a lot more mechanical. 😉
The Air Force Thunderbirds did a flyover the Air Force Academy’s graduation today then gave much of the Colorado Front Range a treat. As part of their #AirForceSalutes thanking front line responders for keeping us safe during the pandemic, they did flybys of many hospitals from Fort Collins down to Pueblo.
It was a bit of a guessing game as to where was best to setup and, unfortunately, I opted for a spot further north than what I should have. Mother Nature complicated things further with hazy skies. Nevertheless, I managed some okay shots and it was definitely a treat.
I stopped by Fort Logan National Cemetery today to visit my dad and pay my respects to him and many others interred at this sacred place. Remember those who have served this great nation and are no longer with their families this season. Miss you, Pa!
Not the usual type of bird I photograph but some that are pretty darned special. The Royal Air Force Red Arrows are on a tour of North America and made a stop in the Mile High City Monday and Tuesday.
We, unfortunately, didn’t get a full airshow however our friends from across the pond did do a series of flybys showcasing their incredible, precision flying and beautiful formations.
The Red Arrows are Britain’s equivalent to our Navy Blue Angels or Air Force Thunderbirds. They fly an upgraded version of the BAE Systems Hawk, a two-seat, high performance training jet.
The flight of nine took advantage of a gorgeous late summer day and it was a treat to be able to see these visitors from our nation’s greatest ally.
Today’s 75th anniversary of D-Day had me harkening back to this event in 1995 when I was honored to have been part of an event celebrating the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II.
The USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) and its air wing were tasked with taking part in the ceremonies at Pearl Harbor. As part of that, we transported a number of old warbirds, some of which had seen service during WWII.
Best of all, when we arrived on station off the coast of Hawaii, the vintage planes took off from the deck of the carrier! To my knowledge, this was the only such event that has done this – it was extraordinary!
The pics are scans from old negatives and need some work but I wanted to post them today given the significance of the date.
Our nation is truly blessed and it is humbling to consider what the Greatest Generation accomplished.
I would normally visit Fort Logan National Cemetery today but it wasn’t quite in the cards this year. Nevertheless, I made sure to respect the true meaning of Memorial Day and instead visited the Thornton Veterans Memorial.
From the memorial for the fallen to the names on the bricks that pave the walkways to ‘Grace’ releasing a dove, it is a beautiful place to honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in service to this great nation. We shall never forget!
“And they who for their country die shall fill an honored grave, for glory lights the soldier’s tomb, and beauty weeps the brave.” ~Joseph Drake
Not the usual type of “bird” you see me photograph, eh?
Wildfires are an unfortunate fact of life in the west during the summer and the brave men and women that battle the blazes have to hone their skills before they join the fight. In recent days, the military has been practicing at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge. The UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters were picking up water from one lake and then dropping it near another.
Having served many years in the Navy on an aircraft carrier, aviation and military photography doesn’t normally appeal to me but as those years move further into the past, I have to admit once again getting a bit excited seeing them in action.
I flew on a number of different military planes and helicopters, including once on an SH-60, the Navy’s variant of the Blackhawk, dubbed the Seahawk. Truly an impressive aircraft.
I stopped by Fort Logan National Cemetery this past weekend to visit my dad and a few other of our nation’s heroes. He – and all of them – are sorely missed and the holidays aren’t quite the same without them.
Wreaths Across America and hundreds of volunteers place wreaths at thousands of graves at Fort Logan and other national cemeteries across the nation before Christmas each year. This very special program’s mission is to, “Remember our fallen U.S. veterans. Honor those who serve. Teach your children the value of freedom.”
The hallowed ground of these cemeteries are transformed into a beautiful and respectful scene, fitting for the holidays. For families like mine, who have loved ones interred there, it is a meaningful and emotional thing to see.
We sponsor the wreath for my dad’s site and some random others and next year, I would encourage you to do the same. Please, honor those who served and are no longer with us and say a prayer for them and their families during this blessed season.
Happy Veterans Day to all who have served.
If you spend much time on the backroads of the Great Plains, you probably have come across these unusual facilities scattered around. I suppose many folks that go by them don’t even give them a second thought but if they did, it might make them pause as the reality of them sets in.
These are Minuteman III missile silos in Logan County, Colorado, some of 450 scattered across the central United States. Each missile carries a warhead capable of creating up to a 350 kiloton blast. For comparison, the bomb we dropped on Hiroshima had a 15 kiloton yield and the one on Nagasaki a 20 kiloton yield.
As a someone that grew up at the height of the Cold War when the fear of their use was at its greatest (other than during the Cuban Missile Crisis), I well remember reading about and preparing for the potential aftermath if man should unleash them.
The threat may have diminished since then but they are still there, sleeping, but ready. Always ready. A sobering thought. I don’t share these images because they are particularly photographic – I just find what they show fascinating and perhaps a bit scary in a way.