When the Navy Blue Angels and the Air Force Thunderbirds flew over Atlanta on Saturday, they do so with one member who aims to show gratitude to people on the ground fighting COVID-19 who she knows personally. The two renowned flight teams were offering a special salute to the healthcare workers battling the coronavirus pandemic that began at 1:35 p.m. as they crossed the skies above several Georgia hospitals.
Among them was U.S. Air Force Capt. Remoshay Nelson who happens to call Douglasville, Georgia her home. On Friday, she spoke to Channel 11Alive about being part of such a special event that's now coming right over her hometown. “This is almost unspeakable. This is extremely an honor to be a part of this mission," Nelson said. "Some of these individuals are my friends. They live and work in Atlanta and they’ve been working extremely hard to respond to COVID-19." Nelson said she hopes Saturday's flight uplifts spirits among those fighting this illness and everyone else who is riding the pandemic out on the ground. “Especially people who are working in the hospitals the first responders just take five seconds to look outside as well as the local residents to look up to the sky and just kind of see a bit of inspiration, a bit of hope.”
Captain Nelson said her own father inspired her to follow a military career. “My father is the one who introduced me to the military. He was in the Navy," she said. "So, this is an honor to really be a part of this mission to have the jets fly over and just kind of connect me back to home. It’s an opportunity for a part of me to be over the city of Atlanta even if it’s just 5 seconds," she added.
She said passing high above her family working in the hospitals and others from her community who are on the front lines is an experience she'll cherish for the rest of her life. Saturday's flyovers, part of similar missions connected to a bigger national salute to healthcare workers, took place at 1:35 p.m. on Saturday and lasted for around 25 minutes.
Aircraft from the 187th Fighter Wing based out of Dannelly Field Air Force Base (AFB) in Montgomery, Alabama and the 117th Air Refueling Wing based out of Birmingham, Alabama conducted motivational flyovers over the skies of a host of Alabama cities Tuesday, May 5, to salute health care workers, first responders, essential employees and all others who are supporting COVID-19 response efforts, in what is now known as Operation American Resolve.
The F-16 jets who bear the red tail markings of the famed Tuskegee Airmen flew over Auburn: 12:00 p.m. -- 12:15 p.m., Tuskegee: 12:00 p.m. – 12:15 p.m., Montgomery: 12:00 p.m. – 12:15 p.m., Tuscaloosa: 12:00 p.m. – 12:15 p.m., Decatur: 12:15 p.m. – 12:25 p.m., Mobile: 12:10 p.m. – 12:20 p.m., Dothan: 12:30 p.m. – 12:40 p.m. The tankers of the 117th flew over Huntsville Hospital 12:45 p.m., St. Vincent's East 1:07 p.m ,St. Vincent's 1:10 p.m,. UAB 1:10 p.m., Princeton 1:10 p.m., Shelby 1:16 p.m., Grandview 1:23 p.m., Brookwood 1:23 p.m., UAB Highlands 1:24 p.m