News: Golden Knights co-headline 2012 air show
Story by Airman 1st Class Katrina Brisbin
MCCONNELL AIR FORCE BASE, Kan. -- The U.S. Army Golden Knights are scheduled to "drop in" for McConnell's 2012 Air Show and Open House.
Wings Over McConnell will take place Sept. 29 and 30, 2012. The event is free and open to the public.
This year's show will be headlined by the U.S. Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron, the Thunderbirds, and the U.S. Army Golden Knights.
The Strategic Army Command Parachute Team was formed in 1959 by 19 "airborne" soldiers from various military units. The intent of the team was to compete during the Cold War in the communist-dominated sport of skydiving. In 1961, the Department of Defense announced that the STRAC team would officially become the U.S. Army Parachute Team.
Upon winning consecutive gold metals, the team earned the nickname of Golden Knights in 1962.
Since then, the "Official Ambassadors of the Army" have performed more than 16,000 shows across 50 states and 48 countries, reaching more than 20,000 people per show
The team's mission is to conduct parachute demonstrations, tandem jumps and to compete in national and international competitions in support of the U.S. Army Accessions Command's tactical, operational and strategic missions.
The 89 men and women of the Golden Knights are separated into eight sections; two demonstration teams, a tandem team, three competition teams and an aviation detachment.
They are one of three authorized DOD aerial demonstration teams, along with the Thunderbirds and the U.S. Navy's flight demonstration squadron, the Blue Angels.
For more than 53 years, the Golden Knights have performed precision free fall demonstrations to connect the U.S. Army with civilians.
Those who wear the black and gold uniform of the United States Army Parachute Team represent the "Band of Excellence" and the "Warrior Ethos" that are demonstrated by U.S. Army Soldiers World-wide. This year they will perform for the McConnell community.
For more information about the Air Show, visit: