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    Posted April 13, 2015 by
    MCAS Beaufort, South Carolina

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    Military aircraft thunder across MCAS Beaufort Air Show


    MCAS BEAUFORT, SC -- The weekend weather cooperated as top military and civilian aircraft thundered across the airfield of Marine Air Corps. Station at Beaufort before an estimated crowd of 106,000 during the Low Country's two day air show April 11 and 12.


    Marine hospitality and support by members of Col. Peter Buck's office and staff provide visitors with an inside experience of the air station located in South Carolina's Low Country. "We're excited to have the community to come aboard," Beaufort Commander Col. Peter D. Buck expressed during the air show. "We're excited to share with the community our mission. We have a great deal of pride associated with our role in defense of our nation, and we'd like to show them our role in marine aviation."


    The Beaufort Air Show provided a rare treat as they allowed guests an up close static view and to watch first hand a rare flight demonstration of the Marines F-35B Lightning II aircraft. The United States military's latest defense support fighter carries unique features such a rear stealth mode and can hover prior to landing on land or an aircraft carrier. Beaufort, also known as Fighter Town East, is the new home to an F-35 pilots training school.


    "The Beaufort community has fought very hard and supported us in bringing the F-35B, the joint strike fighter, to Beaufort," Col. Buck added. "Those jets are here with the return of VMFAT-501 as we work towards the initial operating capability of that squadron and that aircraft capability".


    The Navy and Marines Blue Angels provided their duel performances. First, the team's C-130T transport aircraft known as Fat Albert soared over the runway and over the crowd performing unheard of maneuvers by the hulking aircraft, and piloted by the Blues first female aviator, Marine Capt. Katie Higgins.


    The six Blue Angels F/A-18C's then departed the airfield to begin their 30-minute flight demonstration. As the four-jet diamond team performed several sharp and gravity defying maneuvers, the two solo jets would align up on cue to come screaming across the runway's center point with speed of nearly 400 m.p.h. once the diamond had cleared.


    The six World War II-era aircraft of the GEICO Skytypers made for a great centerpiece between the F-35 and Blue Angels. The Skytypers' Navy SNJ-2 planes, also known as the Army's T6 Texan, gave the crowds the same thrills and gasps as the military jets. Their silver single prop aircraft performed dizzying aerobatic maneuvers to simulate aerial combat maneuvers during the second World War.


    The Marine air station will host it's next air show during Spring 2017. A preliminary announcement will be made this December in Las Vegas.

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