U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds Rerouted, Flyover Over Pasadena Canceled

Published : Monday, March 4, 2019 | 5:59 AM

The Thunderbirds over the Pacific. Photo by Sgt. Ashley Corkins, United States Air Force

A flyover above Pasadena by the vaunted United States Air Force Thunderbirds will not occur as announced earlier, Pasadena Now has learned.

Much to the disappointment of those along the original map route, The Thunderbirds changed their flight pattern for today’s aerial demonstration. The team will be flying over the Captain Marvel premiere in Hollywood tonight to coincide with the premiere of the movie “Captain Marvel.”

Earlier the Air Force had said the unit would perform a practice run at 12:15 p.m. and fly above Pasadena again around 5:30 p.m.

But the Thunderbirds did not announce a flight route change which sent them straight into Van Nuys airport with no JPL or Pasadena flyover. The reason for the flight change was not given.

A flyover above the Pasadena area on Monday, March 4, 2019 was to have followed this route, but was canceled. Map courtesy Thunderbirds

Marvel Studio’s film “Captain Marvel” will be released in theaters nationwide on March 8.

The Thunderbirds were involved with the movie’s production. Last January, lead actress Larson and director Anna Boden visited the team during an Air Force immersion and F-16 flight at the Thunderbirds’ home base, Nellis Air Force Base, Nev.

The Thunderbirds provided two pilots to advise cast and crew on fighter pilot traditions and culture during production. One of the advisors was Maj. Stephen “Cajun” Del Bagno, who passed away in a mishap during a strenuous Thunderbird training flight in Nevada a week after consulting on the movie.

“Executing this flyover is a fitting tribute to Cajun,” said Maj. Matt Kimmel, the Thunderbirds’ lead solo pilot who advised the “Captain Marvel” team with Maj. Del Bagno. “He lived to share his passion for aviation with everyone he met and always left you with a smile. We carry his legacy each day and can’t wait to make him proud by showing off his U.S. Air Force and his team in his backyard.” Del Bagno grew up in Saugus.

The Thunderbirds welcome and encourage viewers to tag the team on social media in photos and videos of their formation with the hashtags #AFThunderbirds, #CaptainMarvel, #SuperHeroAirman and #AirForce.

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