Dec 2011 Assoc Web Site Message Traffic

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111228 - Pestana ... Maloney
111206 -
RAF Cmdr visits Offutt - Hoover
111206 - RB47 info ...Jack
02 - RB47H Model . Tom Hanley


Date: Dec 28, 2011
Subject Mark Pestana
I found this online. Mark was a pilot in the 38th SRS in the early 80s.

Jim Maloney      (See Mark's Aviation Art in our BX section)
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Switching from throttle to paintbrush - NASA Pilot excels at art and flying

Dryden pilot Mark Pestana
Dryden research pilot and artist Mark Pestana. NASA photo by Tony Landis.

Story by Beth Hagenauer
Public Affairs, Dryden Flight Research Center

A NASA pilot's passion as an aviation artist has earned him national recognition. A painting by NASA research pilot and flight engineer Mark Pestana was recently recognized by Aviation Week and Space Technology in the magazine's annual aviation photography and art issue. Pestana's painting "First Flights" earned an honorable mention.

The competition was co-sponsored by the American Society of Aviation Artists (ASAA). "First Flights" has been on display at the Hill Air Force Base Museum, Utah, as part of an annual exhibit sponsored by ASAA. The piece was painted for the cover of a book by Jill Rutan-Hoffman. Pestana's painting was composed to highlight some of the stories Rutan-Hoffman collected that convey the experiences of pilots and crewmembers. Proceeds from the book support Looking Skyward, a non-profit organization that provides Space Camp scholarships to underprivileged children. Pestana donated the cover artwork.

He attributes his interest in aviation and space art to his life as an Air Force "brat." His father's Air Force duty as a B-29 gunner and boom operator on tanker aircraft was a strong influence. Pestana was raised around airplanes and his interest in them was reflected in his love of drawing. His mother was an artist so it was only natural when, as a teenager, he began borrowing her paints to create aviation art. He prefers using acrylic on canvas, although some of Pestana's compositions have been painted with oils. His interest in the science of flight, however, moved him to pursue a flying career in the Air Force.

"First Flight" painting
"First Flight" award-winning painting by Pestana

Pestana is currently an Air Force Reserve colonel based at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. Pestana subjects also include seascapes, landscapes and scenery from his small mountain community about 45 miles northwest of Edwards Base, Calif.

While employed by NASA at the Johnson Space Center, Houston, Texas, Pestana created eight Space Shuttle mission patches. As a flight crew operations engineer in the Astronaut Office, Pestana was approached by Shuttle crewmembers from STS-62, 59, 69, 83, 94, 86, 89 and 93 for help in designing their patches. They can be viewed at:

Pestana's art is also on permanent display at the Pentagon and the National Museum of Naval Aviation, Pensacola, Fla. His painting of the Sputnik I launch hangs in the Space Station Mission Control Center near Moscow. He earned first place in the 1990 U.S. Air Force Artist/Craftsman Competition. He received a Par Excellence Award in the 2001 Experimental Aircraft Association Sport Aviation Art Competition at Oshkosh, Wis.

Pestana is employed by NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center, Edwards, Calif., where he is a flight engineer on the DC-8 flying laboratory for the Airborne Science program. He is a pilot for the Beech King Air 200.

From: R  Hoover (
Date: Dec 6, 2011
Subj: Top Royal Air Force commander visits Offutt,    By  Ryan Hansen   55th Wing Public Affairs

OFFUTT AIR FORCE BASE, Neb. -- The second-highest ranking U.K. Royal Air Force member visited Offutt on Nov. 28, to get a closer look at how the 55th Wing is providing RC-135V/W Rivet Joint initial qualification training to his fellow Airmen.

Air Chief Marshal Sir Simon Bryant, RAF commander-in-chief air command, met with more than 25 RAF Airmen, received an in-depth aircraft tour and saw first-hand how the RAF aircrew and maintenance troops are being trained on the RJ during his visit.

"I had a fantastic visit," he said. "We really do feel part of the team."

As the sole provider of RJ initial qualification training, the 55th WG was tasked with training RAF Airmen after an agreement was made between the Department of Defense and the U.K. Ministry of Defence that allows the RAF to purchase three RJ's over the next seven years.

The RAF expects delivery of their first RC-135W in late 2013.

"Seeing the training first-hand leaves me very, very excited," Bryant said. "I can't wait for 2013."

The 55th Wing started training the Brits in January with more than 60 having completed the program thus far.

Upon graduating from the program, RAF members are allowed to fly on U.S. Rivet Joints, called co-manning, until the U.K.'s RC-135 fleet reaches full operational capability.

So far, more than 20 have flown missions downrange alongside members of the Fightin' Fifty-Fifth.

"It's great to have this RC-135 partnership with our best allies," said. Brig. Gen. Donald Bacon, 55th WG commander. "We've learned a lot working with them and so it's been a mutually beneficial relationship."

RAF Airmen currently in the training program were ecstatic to meet Bryant face-to-face and to talk about the RJ's capabilities.

"It's very nice to have him come here and take a direct interest in what we're doing," RAF Flt. Lt. Bob Watts, a student with the 338th Combat Training Squadron here.

"It was a great morale boost," said RAF Sgt. Mark Rushforth, who is going through RC-135 maintenance training with the 55th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron. "It was also a good opportunity to voice any concerns we had in regards to our training or welfare and also to tell him how accommodating everyone has been here."

Bryant assumed the position as the RAF's commander-in-chief air command in May 2010. He is responsible for generating all RAF air power, for developing capabilities and achieving precise campaign effects across the spectrum of operations, whenever and wherever they are required by the U.K.

He said throughout his career he's enjoyed his time working with the U.S. and this joint venture is very exciting for everyone involved.

"(The U.S. military) has always been the most fantastic and generous of professional teammates," he said. "But it's been even more evident over the past 20 years or so since we've been conducting operations together in various locations around the world."

Bacon said the 55th WG is honored to have the RAF here as part of Team Offutt.

"The RAF has been wonderful hosts to us in the U.K. for decades," he said, "and we at Offutt feel blessed to return some of that hospitality back to our great friends."

The 55th WG expects to continue training RAF personnel through 2013
From Jack Kovacs
Date: Dec 6, 2011
Subj: RB-47H tid bits
While at the AF Museum today I checked out the bookstore and found a whole stack of postcards with the RB-47H 4299 picture (poised on the ramp outside the museum) on them (10 each); also, there's a DVD with a video tour of the museum and the picture on the cover is the RB-47H in the Museum.

From:  Tom Hanley ,

To: Jim Maloney

Date: Dec 2, 2011 at 8:24 PM

Subject: Aloha Jim

Here are some pics of an RB-47H model that I made for my dad last year.
Thought your members might want to see it? Such a great looking airplane.