Monday, April 6, 2009

Gainesville MOH Parade

We are fortunate to be able to help honor Medal of Honor recipients in our area. At Gainesville, Texas, a special program honors these heros every year. Eleven of 105 living recipients attended the event.

Here three of the four CJs at the event are lined up together. The red and white aircraft, museum Bord LN led Yak flight "Bravo", the second flight of CJs and Yaks. Although the weather was windy and overcast, many aircraft made it in for the event.

On the ground, the parade lasted for over an hour. There where many parade vehicles, including privately owned ex-military vehicles and motorcycles (275 motorcycles from the Patriot Guard riders, were expected). In the air there were five "flights", helicopters, L19s, T6s, CJs and Yaks.

Mike, a Red Star flyer and flight leader of Yak flight "Alpha" gave the main briefing to a room packed with crews from the eighteen aircraft participating. After his brief, the group split into individual flights for further briefing.

Although these aircraft are technically CJ's and not Yaks, the call sign "Yak" is often used because it is easy to understand on the radio. Here "Yak 5" is on the inside of the final turn to the parade route. This aircraft was the third CJ licensed in the United States and has been flying here (with different owners and paint schemes) for about 20 years.

"Yak 6" is shown here on the outside of the final turn to the parade route. This ship was selected to perform the "missing man" maneuver on the last pass of the day.

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