The Boeing B-17F "Flying Fortress" AFA-317th Chapter Aircraft

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"It has served, unlike any other bomber, through all of the Second World War. It had become a legend in its time. A tribute to the men who had conceived, designed, and built it-and a monument to the remarkable young men, most of them boys who flew it. These men, and this plane, accomplished one of the most frightening missions ever demanded of men and aircraft. Together they helped end history's last "Glorious War".

MIAMI-HOMESTEAD AIRFORCE ASSOCIATION CHAPTER 317th

AFA-317 Blogspot created and maintained by Benny F. Benitez, FAA (A&P Lic.) Former Chapter President (2009-2010)
As assisted by Cadet Master Sergeant, Andres Cruz (NESA), Civil Air Patrol, Tamiami Composite Squadron CAP-355

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th Captain Kenneth Sampson USAF (Ret.) Meets Another B-52 Indiviual Mr. Ron Infantino a Former USAF Staff Sergeant & B-52 Crew Chief

Shown from left to right is AFA-317th Chapter member Captain Kenneth Sampson USAF (Ret.) a B-52 Navigator, Vietnam Veteran and former USAF Staff Sergeant Ron Infantino B-52 Crew Chief

Shown in the middle is former AFA-317th Chapter President Benny Benitez who's current position as V.P. of Special Projects for the Chapter arranged for Captain Sampson to speak as well as invited Mr. Ron Infantino to attend the luncheon so as to meet Captain Sampson

Miami, Florida 12th November 2015: Observing these two former B-52 crewmen speak and share their stories and experiences with one another was truly informative. It turned out that both of these men served at the same time frame during their operational tours in Vietnam and both recalled their aircraft and squadrons in stunning details.

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th Was Treated to Captain Kenneth Sampson USAF (Ret.) Presentation Concerning His 363 Mission-Operational B-52 Experience In Vietnam

By using the model of the Global, Captain Sampson explained about B-52 world operation in speaking about known patrol routes flown / patterns flown as for example those flown during Operation Chrome Dome during the Cold War era

During his presentation and in great details, Captain Sampson showed the various spots on the global that USAF has and currently sustains active B-52 operations in support of U.S. National interest

Having been an active and participating member of the AIR FORCE ASSOCIATION as known then Miami, now Miami-Homestead Chapter since 2005, I have never experienced a situation where a presenting speaker brought appreciation gifts for those in attendance. Such was the case today, as Captain Sampson being the Gentleman that he is gave out these 3 x 2.5 inch magnet sticker showing a B-52 known as "Diamond Lil" which he flew in Vietnam and of which his aircraft is on display on the grounds of the USAF Academy in Bolder, Colorado 

In appreciation for his outstanding and informative presentation, Lt.Col. Rodrigo "Rod" Huete USAF (Ret.) and Chapter President presented Captain Samspon with the Chapter speaker token of appreciation gift an acrylic block with a nicely, laser etched rendering of a Boeing B-17F Bomber, which is the Chapter AFA-317th adopted mascot aircraft, which proudly represents the Chapter

Miami, Florida 12th November 2015: Those who where in attendance at the November luncheon of the Miami- Homestead AIR FORCE ASSOCIATION Chapter 317th enjoyed a great presentation by one of their own. Chapter member Captain Kenneth Sampson USAF (Ret.) gave an informative and illustrated presentation about USAF B-52 operation in Vietnam, as well as his own experience from his eight (8) combat tours and accomplished three hundred sixty three (363) missions over North Vietnam and Cambodia.
In great detail, Captain Sampson explained the flight and route patterns that he flew on his various mission, as well as extrapolated on the purpose and operation of the USAF "Chrome Dome" Operation in where the USAF keep fully nuclear armed B-52 airborne on a rotational schedule with no one B-52 aircraft being a mere two (2) hours away from any Russian target of interest back during the heated days of the Cold War. Upon his presentation Chapter President Lt. Col. Rodrigo "Rod" Huete proudly presented Captain Sampson with the Chapter speaker token of appreciation gift consisting of a Boeing B-17F laser etched into a clear acrylic block. The Boeing B-17F (with no chin turret ) is the aircraft that represent the Chapter. Well done Captain Sampson. 

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th Welcomes Chapter Member Captain. Kenneth Sampson USAF (Ret.) Vietnam B-52 Navigator As The November 12th Luncheon Guest Speaker




AFA-317th NOVEMBER LUNCHEON AT THE 
94th AERO SQUADRON RESTAURANT
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 12th, 2015 AT 12 NOON 
COST OF LUNCHEON US$25.00 
Please RSVP by Monday 9th November
Please e-mail afa317@gmail.com to 
reserve your place for this event
No credit cards or checks, cash only

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th Is Properly Recognized by AFA Washington D.C. Headquarters For The Chapter Continued And Sustained Membership Momentum

Air Force Association (AFA-317th) Miami-Homestead Chapter President Lt. Col Rodrigo "Rod" Huete announced to all in attendance of the Chapter most recent achieved milestone concerning a special recognition being bestowed by AFA Washington D.C. for the Chapter sustained membership growth

Receiving the award for his effort applied for the benefit of the Chapter is Mr. Raymond G. Bush, Jr., the Chapter Vice President of  Community Partners / Membership. Well done! 

A close up of the AFA-317th Chapter most recent accomplishment

Miami, Florida October 8th 2015: In typical AIR FORCE ASSOCIATION (AFA) Miami-Homestead Chapter 317th style when the 317th sets out to accomplish a goal just the like tough and venerable Boeing B-17 who flew through enemy flak to make their bombing run, the AFA-317th is always on target! Such is with the Chapter latest accomplishment in being recognized by AFA Headquarters up in Washington D.C. for the Chapter sustained new member recruitment. 
It should be noted that the 317th by AFA standard is considered a "Large" Chapter as the current membership standing is at 365 members. 
This effort is attributed the effort of Chapter member, the Vice President of Community Partners, Mr. Raymond G Bush Jr.(shown above). Mr, Bush as been instrumental in his effort and has been yet another motivated and contributing Chapter member. It is ironic that the 317th relates to the Boeing B-17F as their mascot aircraft to represent the Chapter in as the leadership within the Chapter under the guidance of the President Lt. Col. Rodrigo "Rod' Huete USAF (Ret.) and their Vice President, former USAF Major, Ted Kammire and the rest function and perform as a "Crew' for the common goal of the Chapter. Well done to Mr. Bush!

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th October 8th Luncheon With Guest Speaker Sgt. Andrew Cohen Of The Miami-Dade Police Aviation Unit

Sergeant Cohen explains to those in attendance the fleet in which the Miami-Dade Police Department utilizes, which consist of both fixed and rotary wing aircraft's based at both Opa Locka (KOPF) and Tamiami (KTMB) airports within Miami-Dade

A birds view of the luncheon with everyone amazed with the information being presented by Sgt. Cohen

Sgt. Cohen explains the capabilities of their EADS / Airbus AStar AS350 helicopters which is the bulk of the Department fleet. The EADS / Airbus AS350 replaced the Bell Rangers helicopter fleet

Shown attending are members from the Miami University Air Force ROTC Detachment "Det-155" as represented by Lt. J. Szewczyk in ACU camo and Lt.Col. D. Ingram the AFROTC Det Commander 

Sgt, Cohen explained in detail as to how the Air Unit supports and cooperates with Ground Units on various types of "Call Outs" and often the Air Units are the game changers in a situation

October was a full house with well over 20 attendees. Those who arrived first got the upfront seating as seating in the rear was provided for this who arrived late

Shown from left to right are Cadet Airmen 1st Class Civil Air Patrol / Chapter member A. Cruz, Sgt A. Cohen Miami-Dade Police and Benny F. Benitez former Chapter President and the current Vice President of Special Projects who reached out to Sgt Cohen and secured his presence for an amazing and informative luncheon presentation 

Shown is the Chapter President, Lt. Col. Rodrigo "Rod" Huete presenting Sgt. Cohen with the Chapter luncheon speaker appreciation gift, the Chapter mascot aircraft the Boeing B-17F laser etched crystal block. Being both pilots Sgt. Cohen and Lt. Col Huete enjoyed speaking to each other about the aircraft that they have flown

When asked as to how he enjoyed the lunch and the informative presentation given by Sgt. Cohen the expression on Lt. Col D. Ingram said it all! AFA-317th luncheon are always both enjoyable and informative

Miami, Florida October 8th 2015: From former SR-71 pilots to Two Star U.S. Air Force Intelligence General to Navy Admirals, the Miami-Homestead Chapter of the AIR FORCE ASSOCIATION, Chapter 317th has and maintains a monthly line up of interesting and informative speakers that could rival the CBS news program 60 Minutes. With that said the October speaker, Police Sergeant A. Cohen from the Miami-Dade Police Department Aviation Unit was yet another dynamic speaker that gave all who were in attendance an informative insight into the Department aviation capabilities.
Sergeant Cohen explained that the current operational fleet consist of the EADS / Airbus AS350 AStar helicopter of which in the last few years have replaced the older Bell Jet Ranger helicopters. Unknown to many, the Department also has a "fixed wing" asset in as they own and operate a Cessna 172. We learned that the Miami-Dade Police Department was the first civilian law enforcement department to employ and utilized Miniature Air Vehicles "MAV's" via the use of the Honeywell made T-Hawk. We learned that the ten (10) fully, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) rated pilots, which make up the unit, all hold dual ratings to fly both rotary wing aircraft's i.e. helicopters and fixed wing aircraft's i.e. planes. 
All who were in attendance bombard Sergeant Cohen with many questions which were spawn by the shear level of interest and engagement that we all experienced.We at the AFA-317th wishes to thank Miami-Dade Police Sergeant Cohen for his time and outstanding presentation.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th Welcomes Sergeant Andrew Cohen Miami-Dade Police Aviation Unit As The October 8th Luncheon Guest Speaker

Click on for larger viewing 

Miami-Dade Police Aviation Unit Sergeant Andrew Cohen 

Miami-Dade Police Aviation Unit EADS / Airbus AS350 Helicopters

AFA-317th OCTOBER LUNCHEON AT THE 
94th AERO SQUADRON RESTAURANT
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 8th, 2015 AT 12 NOON 
COST OF LUNCHEON US$25.00 
Please RSVP by Tuesday 6th October
Please e-mail afa317@gmail.com to 
reserve your place for this event
No credit cards or checks, cash only

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th Welcomes Civil Air Patrol, Florida Wing, 355th Composite Squadron Major Manuel Pelato (CAP) As The Chapter September 2015 Quest Speaker

Civil Air Patrol Major, Major Manuel Pelati is welcomed by all chapter member who were in attendance and who were all presented with a wonderful presentation and insight into the Civil Air Patrol and the function it plays within our communities

Major Pelati informed all who were in attendance of the Civil Air Patrol now being part of the U.S. Air Force "Total Force" along with Reserve and Air Guard Units 

Representatives from the George T. Baker Aviation Technical College. Shown is Principle Mr. Rene Mantilla who is the Chapter Vice President of Aerospace Education for the Chapter

Shown from left to right is Major Pelati-CAP, Mrs. Llizo first time attendee to an AFA-317th luncheon and newly recruited member and the youngest active member of the Chapter Cadet Airman Cruz of the CAP-355th Tamiami Composite Squadron

Miami, Florida September 10th 2015: For the first time in recent Chapter memory since, 2005, the AFA-317th had the pleasure of having the Civil Air Patrol (CAP) come out and speak to all in attendance. Major Manuel Pelati was the guest speaker and presented a well informed speech that gave everyone a well rounded understanding of the mission of the CAP, both in the support and encouraging of aerospace studies among the youth of the United Stated, as well as to service it bring to the local communities with their contribution to search and rescue and disaster relief.  During Major Pelati presentation, he informed everyone that this past Summer the U.S. Congress past a law in which makes the Civil Air Patrol part of the "Total Force" of the U.S. Air Force. This means that Active-Duty, Reserve, USAF Air National Guard Units and the Civil Air Patrol are all part of the same force! This is an amazing accomplishment for the CAP who have always be considered the Auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force and now are but one segment of a total force concept. The AFA-317 looks forward to work and support the local CAP Squadrons of South Florida.

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th Scheduled Speaker For The Chapter September 2015 Luncheon Florida Wing Civil Air Patrol, 355th Squadron Major Manuel Pelati (CAP)

Major Manuel Pelati introduction Civil Air Patrol (CAP) biography and overview to his accomplishment within (CAP)

The Official logo of the Civil Air Patrol (CAP)

The official logo of the Florida Wing of the Civil Air Patrol (CAP). Each State within the United States as a Wing logo representing each respectfully to their State

The official logo of the Tamiami (Miami, Florida) 355th Composite Squadron know as the "The Black Sheep's" For reason get unknown, it appears that the 355th may be the only Squadron within Civil Air Patrol organization with a historical image connection to the fame World War II, United Stated Marine Corp Fighter Squadron, VMF-214

AFA-317th SEPTEMBER LUNCHEON AT THE 
94th AERO SQUADRON RESTAURANT
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 10th, 2015 AT 12 NOON 
COST OF LUNCHEON US$25.00 
Please RSVP by Tuesday 8th September
Please e-mail afa317@gmail.com to 
reserve your place for this event
No credit cards or checks, cash only

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th Welcomes Their Newest and Youngest Members To The Chapter

In attendance for the first time was newly commissioned USAF 2nd Lieutenant Joan Szewczyk who is currently assigned to the University of Miami USAF ROTC Detachment 155 and is the coordinating liaison for the USAF ROTC program to the local community

Not only a new member to the Chapter but the youngest, paid in good standing member, Civil Air Patrol Cadet Airman Andres A. Cruz from the Tamiami CAP Composite Squadron, the 355th

The lineage of  continuation from the youngest to the veteran Chapter members ensure a strong and vibrant Chapter for years to come. Airman Cruz may be the first young Civil Air Patrol member to join but sure he shall not be the last one as the AFA-317th creates the bridge by and between the AFA-317th and the CAAP-355th

The future of our Nation Air Force stand by with Brigadier General Thomas W, Geary. In time and with effort and perseverance this young Cadet Airman may one day be entrusted with the defense of our great Nation and he and many like him will continue the time honored tradition of service  

AFA-317th Welcomes Their Newest and Youngest Members to The Chapter WELCOME!

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th Welcomes U.S. Southern Command Brigadier General Thomas W. Geary (USAF) As The Chapter August 2015 Quest Speaker

U.S. Southern Command Brigadier General Thomas W. Geary (USAF) in charge of Intelligence Operations at Southern Command

Brigadier General Thomas W. Geary (USAF) presented a well informed (UNCLASSIFIED) briefing on the efforts and purpose of his group within U.S. Southern Command and the role they play toward the interest of the United States with the Area of Responsibility (AOR)

A snap shot of the General power point presentation 

Miami, Florida August 13th 2015: The well presented and informative presentation given by Brigadier General Thomas W. Geary (USAF) gave all who were in attendance a good overview as to how intelligence plays a significant role in the overall security of the region. The General presentation cultivate a host of queries from the audience and resulted in engaging and enlightening all who were present. The General statements covered many areas of concern to the United Stated which U.S. Southern Command keeps an eye on. Afterward, the General was gracious enough to slightly modify his tight time schedule so as to meet as many of the Chapter members one by one and to continue entertaining one on one questions that still arose from the audience. On behave of the leadership at the Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA-317th Chapter,we wish to thank Brigadier General Thomas W. Geary for his time and informative insight, thank you!

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th Scheduled Speaker For The Chapter August 2015 Luncheon U.S. Southern Command Brigadier General Thomas W. Geary (USAF)

Brigadier General Thomas W. Geary introduction United States Air Force (USAF) biography and overview to his career accomplishments

The official U.S.Southern Command logo

AFA-317th AUGUST LUNCHEON AT THE 
94th AERO SQUADRON RESTAURANT
THURSDAY, AUGUST 13th, 2015 AT 12 NOON 
COST OF LUNCHEON US$25.00 
Please RSVP by Tuesday 11th August
Please e-mail afa317@gmail.com to 
reserve your place for this event
No credit cards or checks, cash only

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th Chapter Member Extends Material Support to Civil Air Patrol 355th Squadron

The young Cadet of the 355th waste no time in breaking out the donated tent and commence to assemble it and set it up for the Saturday drill meeting

Instilled with the sense of working as a team, it was naturally instinctive of them to work as one for a common goal as we observed them setting up the tent

Within  a period of no less then 20 minutes the tent was up and the Squadron colors posted

Past President Benny F. Benitez, AFA-317th representative and unofficial liaison by and between the AFA-317th and CAP-355th with Squadron Cadet and adult members

Miami, Florida May 16th 2015: In keeping with the spirit of support, AFA-317th Chapter member and past Chapter President Mr.Benny F. Benitez company, the 94th AeroClaims-Aviation Consultant Group donated a portable / pop up tent and portable fold-away table to the Civil Air Patrol 355th Squadron to support their field activities during their weekend drill day.
The Cadets of the 355th despite meeting at Tamiami Regional Airport have no indoor facility to operate / drill out from the weather and are often subjected to the South Florida rain showers. The tent offers them slight sheltered from the weather for the Cadet drill paper work and general equipment and to place their personal backpacks from getting wet. This is the first step toward hopefully establishing a local grass root effort to create and establish a permanent facility on the airport.

Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA Chapter 317th Visit The Collins Foundation Warbird Fly-In At Banyan Aviation To Appreciate The Chapter Mascot Aircraft, The Boeing B-17G

The mascot aircraft of the Air Force Association Miami-Homestead, AFA-317th Chapter, the venerable, Boeing B-17G. The back bone bomber of the U.S. Army Air Corp, 8th Air Force

The Boeing B-17G model "Flying Fortress" was distinguished by its nose section chin turret which help fend off attacking aircraft from a frontal position, which was a know means of attack by the German Luftwaffe pilots of World War II

The tails of all Boeing B-17 carrier an alphabetical code system of letters so as to annotate the group to which the bomber would belong to and would help to identify who was flying with you within your formation during large plane bombing formations

A proper side view of the Boeing B-17G. Note the height and size of the tail which help in the steering, the yaw effect of the aircraft operational flight characteristic

The inner view of the Boeing B-17G internal bomb bay which housed depending on the bomb load up to fifteen (15) 500 lbs bombs as shown

The Air Force Association Miami-Homestead AFA-317th Chapter speaker appreciation award given to all invited guest speakers

The details as created by the laser etching is amazing to see the B-17 in scale within the block

Fort Lauderdale, Florida February 1st 2015: The Boeing B-17 bomber was known as the 'Flying Fortress" due to the amount of the defensive guns it had so as to protect itself from attacking, enemy fighter aircraft's. The early models of the B-17 to the last production model known as the "F" model saw many changes and improvement. One such improvement was the installation of chin mounted 50 caliber guns which was incorporated into the "G" and afterward.
The Air Force Association Miami-Homestead Chapter AFA-317 has adopted the B-17 as its mascot aircraft to represent the Chapter who motto is "The Most Relevant AFA Chapter". When the AFA-317 has invited, special guest speakers at their monthly luncheon, as a sign of  their appreciation to the speakers, the Chapter presents speaker with a laser engraved B-17 within a clear acrylic block.