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Guardians of Freedom to showcase Sheppard, AF mission

The U.S. Air Force premier demonstration squadron “Thunderbirds” sit on Grissom’s parking ramp prior to the kick-off of the Grissom Air & Space Expo Sept. 7, 2019. The airshow brought in more than 50,000 spectators the first day alone and featured several civilian and military aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Benjamin Mota)

The U.S. Air Force premier demonstration squadron “Thunderbirds” sit on Grissom’s parking ramp prior to the kick-off of the Grissom Air & Space Expo Sept. 7, 2019. The airshow brought in more than 50,000 spectators the first day alone and featured several civilian and military aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Benjamin Mota)

U.S. Air Force Maj. Paul Lopez, F-22 Demo Team commander, performs the stiff-pitch maneuver during the Spirit of St. Louis Air Show Sept. 7-8, 2019.  Founded in 2007, the F-22 Raptor Demo Team showcases the unique capabilities of the world's premier 5th-generation fighter aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by 2nd Lt. Sam Eckholm)

U.S. Air Force Maj. Paul Lopez, F-22 Demo Team commander, performs the stiff-pitch maneuver during the Spirit of St. Louis Air Show Sept. 7-8, 2019. Founded in 2007, the F-22 Raptor Demo Team showcases the unique capabilities of the world's premier 5th-generation fighter aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by 2nd Lt. Sam Eckholm)

SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE, Texas – It takes a dedicated team to execute a military aircraft sortie.

Of course, there is a pilot flying the aircraft through the skies, but for many flying machines in the Air Force arsenal, there are others who play a prominent role in mission success. The maintainer. The engineer. The fireman. The medic. The messenger. The defender.

No matter the role or responsibility, the Air Force’s ability to fly, fight and win in air, space and cyberspace relies on a team – the Guardians of Freedom.

The Sheppard AFB Guardians of Freedom Open House & Air Show will showcase the largest and most diverse Air Force training installation Oct. 26-27, 2019, a significant player in the service’s mission success around the world.

Consider this:

  • All of the Air Force’s aircraft maintainers complete their training at a Sheppard asset
  • The Air Force’s logistic officer’s force trains at Sheppard
  • More than half of the Air Force’s fighter pilots will train at Sheppard
  • With more than 60 geographically separated units, Sheppard’s reach is global
  • International partners choose Sheppard for their training, whether its aircraft maintenance at the 82nd Training Wing or pilot training at the 80th Flying Training Wing’s Euro-NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training program

But what’s an air show and open house without things to do and see.

The audience is sure to be dazzled with aerial performances by Air Force assets like the U.S. Air Force Demonstration Squadron “Thunderbirds,” the F-22 Raptor Demo Team and Heritage Flight, and Wings of Blue Parachute Team from the Air Force Academy. Civilian acts include the Trojan Phlyers, Red Bull Air Force, FighterJets Inc., Doc’s B-29, and the loveable Jelly Belly Comedy Air Act.

Guests will also be able to get up close and personal with aircraft on display during the show, including fifth-generation multi-role jet fighter the F-35 Lightning II, the Navy’s T-45 Goshawk trainer, a World War II-era C-47 Skytrain, Extra EA-300 civilian aerobatic planes, and many other aircraft used at Sheppard for pilot and aircraft maintenance training.

And what would an air show be without all of the other amentities that come with it. Also featured during the event in the virtual and augmented reality experiences led by the 82nd TRW Public Affairs Office, a Kid's Zone for the young and young-at-heart, food and beverage concessionnaires, a beer garden, and premium box seating.

Missile Road Gate will open at 9 a.m. for the general public. Buses will be available to transport guests from the parking areas to the air show event area.

Individuals with DoD identification cards should use the Hospital Gate to enter and exit Sheppard.

There are a few do’s and don’ts to be mindful of during the two-day event. All items brought to the open house and air show are subject to search by 82nd Security Forces Squadron personnel.

Here are items prohibited from the event: Unmanned aircraft systems, a.k.a. drones; helium balloons; coolers; backpacks; large purses and tote bags; large camera bags; bicycles, skateboards, scooters, and hover boards; firearms; edged weapons such as knives; pets; and alcohol.

Allowed items include small purses; small diaper bags; camera, video cameras and phones; folding chairs, which must be out of the bag when going through security; strollers and wagons; and food, which must be hand carried and not in coolers.

For more information, visit sheppardairshow.info.

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