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Okies on display at Africa Aerospace, Defence Expo

South African students tour a U.S. KC-135 Stratotanker at the African Aerospace and Defense Expo at Waterkloof Air Force Base, South Africa, Sept. 14, 2016. The U.S. military is exhibiting a C-17 Globemaster III, a KC-135 Stratotanker, a C-130J Super Hercules, an HC-130 King, and an MQ-9 Reaper. The aircraft come from various Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve Command units. The U.S. routinely participates in events like AADE to strengthen partnerships with regional partners. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ryan Crane)

South African students tour a U.S. KC-135 Stratotanker at the African Aerospace and Defense Expo at Waterkloof Air Force Base, South Africa, Sept. 14, 2016. The U.S. military is exhibiting a C-17 Globemaster III, a KC-135 Stratotanker, a C-130J Super Hercules, an HC-130 King, and an MQ-9 Reaper. The aircraft come from various Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve Command units. The U.S. routinely participates in events like AADE to strengthen partnerships with regional partners. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ryan Crane)

South African students tour a KC-135 Stratotanker from the 507th Air Refueling Wing, Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma, at the African Aerospace and Defense Expo at Waterkloof Air Force Base, South Africa, Sept. 14, 2016. The U.S. military is exhibiting a C-17 Globemaster III, a KC-135 Stratotanker, a C-130J Super Hercules, an HC-130 King, and an MQ-9 Reaper. The aircraft come from various Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve Command units. The U.S. routinely participates in events like AADE to strengthen partnerships with regional partners. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ryan Crane)

South African students tour a KC-135 Stratotanker from the 507th Air Refueling Wing, Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma, at the African Aerospace and Defense Expo at Waterkloof Air Force Base, South Africa, Sept. 14, 2016. The U.S. military is exhibiting a C-17 Globemaster III, a KC-135 Stratotanker, a C-130J Super Hercules, an HC-130 King, and an MQ-9 Reaper. The aircraft come from various Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve Command units. The U.S. routinely participates in events like AADE to strengthen partnerships with regional partners. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ryan Crane)

U.S. military aircraft are displayed at the African Aerospace and Defense Expo at Waterkloof Air Force Base, South Africa, Sept. 14, 2016. The U.S. military is exhibiting a C-17 Globemaster III, a KC-135 Stratotanker, a C-130J Super Hercules, an HC-130 King, and an MQ-9 Reaper. The aircraft come from various Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve Command units. The U.S. routinely participates in events like AADE to strengthen partnerships with regional partners. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ryan Crane)

U.S. military aircraft are displayed at the African Aerospace and Defense Expo at Waterkloof Air Force Base, South Africa, Sept. 14, 2016. The U.S. military is exhibiting a C-17 Globemaster III, a KC-135 Stratotanker, a C-130J Super Hercules, an HC-130 King, and an MQ-9 Reaper. The aircraft come from various Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve Command units. The U.S. routinely participates in events like AADE to strengthen partnerships with regional partners. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ryan Crane)

WATERKLOOF AIR FORCE BASE, South Africa -- A team of Citizen Airmen from the 465th Air Refueling Squadron here and the 507th Maintenance Group here took part in the Africa Aerospace & Defence Exposition 2016 in South Africa, Sept. 14-18, as part of an ongoing effort to strengthen the partnership between the two nations.

 

The Airmen worked alongside active duty Airmen and the Air National Guard. Together they helped to open the first day of the event, held at Waterkloof Air Force Base, Pretoria, South Africa. The trade show took place during the first three days of the event, which gave defense officials from various nations and vendors in the industry a chance to see our fleet. An air show open to the public was held the last two days.

 

U.S. Ambassador to South Africa Patrick H. Gaspard; Heidi Grant, deputy under secretary for international affairs; and Brig. Gen. Robert Huston, 17th Expeditionary Air Force mobilization assistant to the vice commander, participated in the opening ceremony events along with industry professionals and embassy officials.

 

The U.S. Air Forces in Europe Band performed along with the jazz music band, Wings of Dixie, who played events at the expo and in the local community.

 

On display were: A C-130J Super Hercules from Keesler AFB, Louisiana; a New York Air National Guard C-17 Globemaster III; an HC-130P/N King, and KC-135 Stratotanker from Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma; and an MQ-9 Reaper from Hancock Field Air National Guard Base, New York. The aircraft were open for visitors to enter and ask the crews questions.

 

(Story contributed by Tech. Sgt. Ryan Crane, USAFE-AFAFRICA Public Affairs)