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September 18, 2007— The Air Force and friends began celebrating the service’s 60th anniversary as an independent force last year with the dedication of the new Air Force memorial. Since then, people—young and old—around the globe have commemorated the momentous Sept. 18, 1947 event in a variety of ways. The collection of images below represents some of those activities.

The Air Force Memorial
Organizers make final preparations for the dedication ceremony of the Air Force Memorial, in Arlington, Va., on Oct. 12, 2006. The memorial's dedication ceremony, which kicked off at 9 a.m. Oct. 14, served as the start of the Air Force's 60th anniversary celebration.
(US Air Force photo/TSgt. Larry A. Simmons)

  

Old Buddies
Just like old times, Donald Krueger (left) shares stories and cracks jokes while in a line for the dining hall with retired Lt. Col. Harold Fischer during a Sept. 13, 2007 tour held to honor Korean War veterans in South Korea. Fischer is a double ace fighter pilot from the war. Krueger was an enlisted munitions specialist. The two had not seen each other in 55 years. Air Force Korean War veterans are visiting South Korea during a weeklong tour in observance of the Air Force's 60th Anniversary.
(US Air Force photo/SSgt. Bennie J. Davis III)

Tradition
Maj. Gen. Kevin J. Kennedy and an unidentified young airman ceremoniously cut a cake. They represent the most senior and most junior airmen in attendance for the Air Force 60th Anniversary Ball Sept. 8, 2007 at Bagram AB, Afghanistan. Kennedy is the director of the Air Component Coordination Element from Kabul, Afghanistan.
(US Air Force photo/SSgt. Craig Seals)

 

Hawaiian Style
Tim McCullough (right) presents the Air Force 60th Anniversary Aloha shirt to Lt. Gen. Loyd S. Utterback Sept. 9, 2007 at Centerstage in Ala Moana Center in Hawaii. McCullough is from the Reyn Spooner, and General Utterback is the 13th Air Force commander. The shirt was designed by Reyn's to highlight the Air Force's 60th birthday and was one of the first events of Air Force Week Honolulu, taking place Sept. 7 through 15, 2007.
(US Air Force photo/TSgt. Chris Vadnais)

Household Name
Airmen from the 27th Fighter Squadron at Langley AFB, Va., speak with Alex Trebek, host of the TV game show "Jeopardy!," as he sits in the cockpit of an F-22 Raptor at Kadena AB, Japan, in March, 2007. Trebek and his crew were on a USO tour and taped video clues at various base locations in honor of the Air Force's 60th Anniversary.
(US Air Force photo)

 

Rocket Science
Spectators watch as Phil Chouynerd runs the "Rockteers Workshop" and launches a model rocket at the Christa McAuliffe Planetarium Aug. 21, 2007, in Concord, N.H. The planetarium hosted the Air Force New England Science Day, which provided children and adults hands-on displays of Air Force equipment, a model rocket launch demonstration, an F-16 Fighting Falcon static display, and "Do Something Amazing" display trailers.
(US Air Force photo/SSgt. Bennie J. Davis III)

 

 

Air Guard on Bikes
Lt. Col. Michael Girardin briefs Maine Air National Guard Cycle Team participants outside Freeport, Maine, about the final leg of their 170-mile, three-day bicycle ride from Bangor to Portland. The 18 Air Guard cyclists rode to promote Air Force Week New England that takes place Aug. 17 to 26, 2007. Team members had opportunities to speak with people along the route about the Air Guard during their trek.
(US Air Force photo/TSgt. Mike R. Smith) 

 

The Greatest Generation
World War II veteran Robert McNally talks with Jim Vocell Aug. 19, 2007 at Pease Air National Guard Base at Portsmouth, N.H. McNally, 81, was a guest attending the 2007 Wings of Hope Air Show with hopes of being reunited with old friends. The 2007 Wings of Hope Air Show at Pease is in conjunction with Air Force Week New England. Vocell is from the American Airpower Museum and pilot of the "Miss Hap," the oldest flying B-25 Mitchell bomber in the world and the personal aircraft of Gen. Henry "Hap" Arnold, the only general of the Air Force.
(US Air Force photo/SSgt. Bennie J. Davis III)


It’s Football!
Members of the Air Force Honor Guard Drill Team perform during halftime Sept. 16, 2007 at the NFL's Carolina Panthers vs. Houston Texans football game in North Carolina. The performance was part of the team's "Birthday Tour" in commemoration of the Air Force's 60th anniversary.
(US Air Force photo/SrA. Daniel DeCook)

 

Candy Bomber Charmers
Retired Col. Gail Halvorsen, known as the “Candy Bomber” of the Berlin Airlift, takes a break from signing autographs for a photo opportunity with Natasha and Alex Harris during US Air Forces in Europe's Air Force 60th Anniversary celebration at Ramstein AB, Germany, Aug. 11, 2007.
(US Air Force photo/A1C Kenny Holston)



First Hand
Retired Lt. Col. Leo Thorsness, famed Wild Weasel pilot and Medal of Honor recipient from the Vietnam War, speaks at the US Air Forces in Europe's Air Force 60th Anniversary celebration Aug. 11, 2007 at  Ramstein AB, Germany. (Read “Full Day” to learn of some of his exploits.)
(US Air Force photo/A1C Kenny Holston)

 

 

On Times Square
New York City offers the Air Force a 60th birthday salute in Times Square Sept. 18, 2007, courtesy of the Nasdaq stock market and Reuters news service. The companies displayed the Air Force graphics throughout the day to mark the occasion.