ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam --
Long lines and huge crowds filled the Andersen AFB flightline Feb. 20. The scene, reminiscent of something one might see at an amusement park, was Andersen opening its doors to the public for the 2016 Pacific Air Partners Open House.
More than 23,000 Guam residents, tourists and military members alike received the opportunity to walk around the flightline and see aircraft such as the U.S. Air Force B-52 Stratofortress, F-16 Fighting Falcon, E-3 Sentry, and aircraft from the Japan Air Self-Defense Force and Royal Australian Air Force up-close.
“We have a unique lineup of aircraft and Airmen here to showcase our incredible Air Force capabilities and pacific partners present for Exercise Cope North,” said Brig. Gen. Andrew Toth, 36th Wing commander. “There truly isn’t anywhere else in the world that has the capabilities we do here in Guam. We are able to conduct complex training exercises on land, air and sea and we couldn’t do that without your tremendous support.”
The largest community outreach event of the year, the open house aims to enhance public awareness of the U.S. military's mission, equipment, facilities and personnel and to promote positive community relations.
“I really enjoyed being able to visit the base, see these planes up-close and meet with military members,” said Ricky Emesiochel, a local resident of Guam. “My favorite part was the RQ-4 Global Hawk. I can’t believe that aircraft is remotely piloted!”
As the day drew to a close, members of the local community were able to go home knowing they learned something new about the military and were thanked for their continued support of the troops.
“It is an honor to call this island home,” Toth said. “We hope that this Open House gives everyone the opportunity to see some of our aircraft up-close and talk to some of our Airmen both from the U.S and our coalition partners. From all of Team Andersen including our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, Coast Guardsmen, Reserve and Guardsmen—we thank you.”