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AETC showcases people, missions at one of world’s largest air shows

  • Published
  • By 2nd Lt. Gabriele Gocso
  • Air Education and Training Command Public Affairs

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas – Air Education and Training Command’s missions and people were on full display as AETC was the featured major command for the 70th edition of the Experimental Aircraft Association’s (EAA) AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, July 24-30.

Known as one of the largest airshows in the world, EAA AirVenture Oshkosh included over 650,000 attendees and 10,000 aircraft.

Through a series of interactive displays and demonstrations, AETC Airmen emphasized the United States Air Force's recruit, train and educate missions, while fostering a spirit of collaboration among aviation enthusiasts and industry partners.

"Events like this afford us the perfect opportunity to showcase the essence of service and the diverse career paths available within the Department of the Air Force," Lt. Gen. Brian Robinson, AETC commander, said. “Every Airman and Guardian has a story, and our military service has offered each of us opportunities that we never could have imagined. Events like this, allow us to tell our stories.  From firefighters and doctors to pilots and engineers, together we contribute to advancing air power, space power and the United States of America in a manner reflective of the nation we serve."

Some of the career fields highlighted by AETC Airmen were: special warfare, critical care air transport team, firefighters, military working dog handlers, explosive ordnance disposal technicians, recruiters, pilots and aircrew. Each Airmen was available to tell the Air Force story and explain their individual training and expertise. Exhibits and demonstrations offered attendees the opportunity to take a closer look at today’s modernized Air Force training programs with simulators and virtual reality training experiences available.

“The greatest asset we have is our Airmen,” said Chief Master Sgt. Chad Bickley, AETC command chief. “Our Airmen give us the competitive advantage and our adversaries know that. It’s not the F-35, B-21, or any other platform…it’s our people that give us the decisive, winning edge. Our Airmen are always on point and that was evident over the last couple of days here in Oshkosh.”  

Shadow Strike, Air Force Recruiting Service’s national asset was also available for attendees.  The mobile attraction replicates an intense rescue mission and features 3D and 4D viewpoints, motion theater seats, sensory effects and 360-degree surround sound. 

“The mobile tour is more than a ride, it’s an immersive 4D experience from start to finish,” said Brig. Gen. Chris Amrhein, Air Force Recruiting Service commander.  “Our overall goal at events like this is to inform, influence and inspire the next generation of Airmen. It’s a great opportunity for us to demonstrate not only the Air Force’s airpower, but its remarkable people.”

AETC officials also manned CV-22, T-1, T-6, T-38, C-17 and KC-135 static aircraft displays on Boeing Plaza at the air show, with pilots aboard the C-17 and KC-135 taking to the sky for flyover demonstrations July 29 and today.