My photo
... is a freelance photographer working in Middle Georgia

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Mission Complete

I covered an historic event today. The 19th Air Refueling Group held its "Mission Complete" ceremony at Robins Air Force Base. The Black Knights are one of the oldest organizations in the US Air Force, originating in 1927 as the 19th Observation Group. Over the years they were at different bases flying different missions. They came to Robins in 1968. They have been flying refueling missions since 1983. They will be gone at the end of September.

I have probably covered them more than any other unit at Robins over the years. Some of the coolest assignments were doing refueling missions. A lot of good pictures.

Today's ceremony was began on the flightline at 2pm. Acres and acres of uncovered concrete. It was hot. My friend and co-worker Gene Rector brought his own shade, strolled in with his umbrella. The clouds began to build, we got a breeze, and distant lightning. The clouds and the wind made for some nice images.
The flags were all billowing against the darkening sky. Quite dramatic. The weather made what would have been a pretty routine ceremony a bit more photogenic.

The top photo I shot early as the clouds began to build. It may make the paper. The second two, Col. Bence, the 19th commander in the office chair in front of the blowing flag I had to shoot. What a cool photo, this guy in fatigues, the office chair and the flag. Sometimes I see these pictures while covering events and wonder why no one else is shooting it.

The real wide shot of the dais under the dark sky is another one that won't make newsprint, but I just had to shoot it. By this time I was getting a bit nervous, out on this open expanse, lightning getting closer, and I have lots of metal hanging on my body.

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