The Thunderbirds, the Air Force’s air demonstration squadron, honored San Diego County health workers and other COVID-19 first responders with formation flights over several hospitals May 15.
Six F-16 Fighting Falcons performed the flyovers starting at noon on a south-to-north route at locations starting in Chula Vista then flying over downtown San Diego and Coronado, East County, Hillcrest, Kearny Mesa, La Jolla, Encinitas, Oceanside and Escondido.
“My mother is 98 years old and getting a procedure done here, and my father was a naval aviator,” Jann Davidson said outside Scripps Green Hospital in La Jolla. “This is a Navy and Marine Corps family and it made our hearts stop when we saw the planes. It was a joy to see. I think it’s wonderful for the medical workers to be honored this way and we feel lucky to have been here for this day.”
After leaving San Diego County, the Thunderbirds continued to Orange and Los Angeles counties.
It was the second recent flyover of hospitals in La Jolla and across the San Diego area. A group of private pilots performed their own April 24.
— San Diego Union-Tribune reporter Pam Kragen contributed to this report