As Golden Knights, we are Soldiers first, highly trained in one of the hundreds of occupational skills. We are proud to represent the high standards that are reflected in all of America’s Soldiers. This week provides an excellent opportunity to prove just that!
Every year brings a new show season. It is the culmination of the months spent in Golden Knights Assessment and Selection, hundreds of training jumps and hours of endless training in Homestead, Florida. After every winter training, the Team always has to answer the question, “Was it enough?” This year, Black Team can respond with a resounding, “Yes!”
The Black Demonstration Team had the privilege of introducing two new Team members this year, both of whom were put to the test in front of hundreds of thousands of onlookers! They joined the Team in performing five mass formations for the American Public, from 12,500 feet.
Black Team performed a media show on Friday afternoon for the “Practice day.” Keesler AFB spectators were the first to witness our 2011 team, along with some other first-time 2011 performances, including the Blue Angels.
The Team continued to wow the crowd as they performed twice on Saturday. First, was a mass formation with a show line spread. This is where the Team lands all along the show line, ensuring every patron witnesses a close up view of a Golden Knight landing. After walking along the show line and interacting with the audience at the Army recruiter booth, they quickly returned to the skies.
The second show included a Team line-up where SFC Will Fleming took the honor of standing in front of his 2011 Demonstration Team for the first time.
Perfect weather greeted the Team throughout the weekend, allowing them to perform all five of the scheduled jumps. Sunday turned out another great day of Black Team performances, as well as the rest of the air show line-up.
Black Team proves ready for whatever 2011 can send our way. You can follow the Team on Twitter @ArmyGK
SSG Adrian Hill (Black Team new guy) practices his show salute during training Thursday (photo by SGT Dan Cook)
There are some traditions in the Golden Knights that can trace their roots far deeper than the Team’s 50-year lifespan. While the Black and Gold canopies and air show performances are signatures of the US Army Parachute Team, the Army Values and good, old-fashioned mentorship are what REALLY holds this Team together.
The Non-Commissioned Officer (the rank of Sergeant and above) has been known for generations as the “Backbone of the Army.” On them rests the responsibility to teach, train, and lead the Soldiers in their charge. Every member of the Golden Knights (more…)