Team Calls Nellis AFB Home
The United States Air Force Thunderbirds past and present will be saluted in November, 2012 as the Nevada Aerospace Hall of Fame (NVAHOF) enshrines and celebrates them at festivities coinciding with Aviation Nation- Nellis Air Force Base Open House and Air Show. The NVAHOF will recognize the current team and the Thunderbird Alumni at the NVAHOF induction banquet on November 7, 2012.
Since 1953, America's Ambassadors in Blue have represented the rich tradition of the United States Air Force around the world. Since June 1, 1956, the Thunderbirds have called Nellis Air Force Base their home and the NVAHOF takes great pride recognizing the Thunderbird association as a pillar of the community. “We are thrilled to recognize the Thunderbirds,” said Thornton ‘T.D.’ Barnes, NVAHOF Director. “It is with great pride that the NVAHOF distinguishes the Thunderbird organization for its service to its country and to the state of Nevada.”
Just six years after the U.S. Air Force was created as a separate service the Air Force’s official air demonstration team, The Thunderbirds was born. On May 25, 1953 the 3600th Air Demonstration Unit was activated at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz. The unit adopted the name ‘Thunderbirds,’ influenced in part by the strong Native American culture and folklore from the southwestern United States where Luke Air Force Base is located. Seven officers and 22 enlisted personnel flew and maintained the straight wing F-84G.
Millions of people have witnessed the Thunderbird’s precision demonstrations throughout the world. People from all walks of like have marveled at the professionalism and dedication of the officers and airmen throughout the years. The Thunderbirds represent the many hard-working airmen who voluntarily serve our country around the globe defending our freedom.
NVAHOF has dedicated its mission to preserving the history of aerospace in the state of Nevada and establishes and maintains an ongoing means of honoring individuals from Nevada who have contributed in a significant manner to the development, advancement and promotion of aerospace.
NVAHOF also honors individuals who were not native to Nevada but were associated with the Battle Born state, whose careers enhanced the aerospace climate worldwide or in space. The mission of NVAHOF is unique as it especially recognizes and honors the men and women, federal, military, and civilian, who worked in secrecy at various locations in Nevada.
The primary educational objectives of the NVAHOF focus on honoring the past by supporting the future of aviation. First, the programming consists of four annual scholarships awarded to outstanding students of aviation and aerospace engineering on the high school and university levels. Second, the NVAHOF also provides a state-wide Speakers Bureau for outreach within the community. The third educational objective is the creation of an accessible archive of Nevada aviation history. The uniqueness and diversity of Nevada’s aviation projects make it the most important state in the nation in regards to cutting-edge aerospace technology and development.