Female Pilots Share Stories At National Air And Space Museum
(March 20, 2010)
CHANTILLY, Va. (3/16/2010 - AFNS) -- The staff at the
National Air and Space Museum's Udvar-Hazy Center hosted
their annual Women in Aviation and Space Family Day March 13
where Airmen had to chance to talk to young girls about
being a female pilot.|
|Lt. Col. Merryl Tengesdal answers questions about being a U-2 pilot during the annual Women in Aviation and Space Family Day at the National Air and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Va., March 13, 2010. Airmen had the chance to talk to young girls about being female aviators. Colonel Tengesdal is the Detachment 2 commander for flight testing at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.
For Lt. Col. Merryl Tengesdal, it was "an opportunity to
show the young ladies that they're not limited in their
"The opportunities are endless and you can do whatever you
set your sights on," the colonel said.
Colonel Tengesdal, a U-2 pilot, is the Detachment 2
commander for flight tests at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.
She was one of a handful of female Airmen invited to the
museum to share her stories at one of the center's "Ask the
Lt. Col. Nicole Malachowski was another Airman invited to
speak at the family day. She shared many of her experiences
with the crowds as the first female to fly with the
Thunderbirds, the U.S. Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron.
She also spoke about the recent Congressional Gold Medal
ceremony honoring the Women Airforce Service Pilots.
"The WASP are my heroes and still inspire me," Colonel
Malachowski said to the crowd of mostly young girls. "After
learning their story and hearing about what they went
through, I know now there's nothing we can't do."
According to Gloria Fulwood, the Hazy Center family programs
manager, having Airmen participate in events like this is a
great way for people to connect with the military.
"It's important to see the faces behind the airplanes," Mrs.
Fulwood said. "It's an amazing experience for our guests to
meet them face to face. We need them to be mentors to the
Eight-year-old Reanna Smith agreed.
"I liked getting to ask them questions," she said of the
Airmen who volunteered at the center. "They told us all
about what the Air Force does. I definitely learned a lot
Erica Tiffany, who was there with her Girl Scout troop, said
she would love to learn to fly. After seeing female pilots,
she has a better understanding of what she has to do to make
that dream come true.
"I need to do (well) in math and science," Erica, age 7,
said. "I want to learn how to fly helicopters; I think that
would be lots of fun!"
The Udvar-Hazy Center staff hosts family days throughout the
year. For more information about their events, visit
USAF SSgt. J.G. Buzanowski|
Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs
Air Force News Service
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