News » San Antonio News

San Antonio-based pilot tapped to join Air Force Thunderbirds team

By

comment
FACEBOOK / AIR FORCE THUNDERBIRDS
  • Facebook / Air Force Thunderbirds
The elite Air Force Thunderbirds demonstration team this week used social media to introduce a new operations officer, who happens to be based at San Antonio’s Kelly Field.

Major Thomas Werner of the 182nd Fighter Squadron at Texas Air National Guard at Kelly Field will serve as the team’s operations officer starting in June. His tasks will include overseeing all air space coordination, safety observation and ground communication with the pilots during aerial demonstrations.

The organization called Werner “an experienced leader and skilled F-16 pilot.” Makes sense: he's garnered more than 2,400 flight hours, including 912 spent in combat support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

The Thunderbirds demonstration team originally began as the 30th Aero Squadron, activated for the first time during World War I in 1917. The squadron has seen several iterations since then — inactive and active alike — but currently operates as the USAF Air Demonstration Squadron, known publicly as the Thunderbirds.

Stay on top of San Antonio news and views. Sign up for our Weekly Headlines Newsletter.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the San Antonio Current Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the San Antonio Press Club for as little as $5 a month.