Thunderbirds, Blue Angels fly over NYC, Philadelphia in salute to essential workers

Posted at 3:48 PM, Apr 27, 2020

The Blue Angels and Thunderbirds will flew New York City; Newark, New Jersey; Trenton, New Jersey and Philadelphia on Tuesday.

The Air Force and Navy said that Tuesday’s show is in honor of essential workers helping treat those with COVID-19.

“We are truly excited to take to the skies with our Navy counterparts for a nation-wide tribute to the men and women keeping our communities safe.” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. John Caldwell, Thunderbird 1 and mission commander for the flyover. “We hope to give Americans a touching display of American resolve that honors those serving on the frontline of our fight with COVID-19.”

“We are incredibly honored to have the opportunity to salute those working on the frontline of the COVID-19 response, we are in awe of your strength and resilience,” said Cmdr. Brian Kesselring, U.S. Navy Blue Angels commanding officer and flight leader. “Thank you to all of those in essential industries keeping our nation moving forward. We will get through this. We are all in this together.”

The Navy and Air Force said that Tuesday’s shows will be among the first of many to be performed throughout the nation.

The Pentagon said a formation of six F-16C/D Fighting Flacon and six F-18C/D Hornet aircraft will conduct the flyovers as a collaborative salute from the Air Force and Navy to recognize healthcare workers, first responders, military, and other essential personnel while standing in solidarity with all Americans during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Pentagon said those along the path of the shows can see the formations from their homes, and are encouraged to maintain social distancing guidelines.

Justin Boggs is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @jjboggs or on Facebook .