in oUr oWn
keeping the Michael anderson
in Fall 2008, Washington State honored one of its heroes, Lt.
Col. Michael Anderson, an astronaut who perished in the
Space Shuttle Columbia tragedy February 1, 2003. His dreams
of flight and space exploration were deeply rooted in his life, as was his love of family
and his faith. He made his dreams become reality through hard work, perseverance and
vision, and he shared these values with his children and the 446 Airlift Wing at McChord AFB, Washington, I have
young people. flown missions all over the world and in support of operations
I feel a deep affinity to Michael’s love of his country and his in Afghanistan and Iraq.
goal to help youth achieve their dreams. Michael’s legacy is Like Michael Anderson, I am grateful for the opportunities
important to me because it resonates with that I have had. It has been a challenging
the values that my parents taught me. and amazing career. My parents instilled
Be humble. Work hard to achieve your in me the importance of remaining hum-
dreams. Work just as hard at service to ble and contributing to my community.
your country and your community. During the annual Eagle Aviation Day
All of my life I have had a love for avia- Camp at King County International air-
tion. Growing up near Seattle, Washing- port I introduce hundreds of kids to ca-
ton, with its rich aviation legacy, my par- reers in aviation, as well as to airport op-
ents took me to enjoy the wonderful air erations. They receive a ride in a small
shows at McChord AFB in Tacoma, and aircraft, a tour of the airport and a sim-
at Paine Field in Everett. I was inspired ulator ride. It is wonderful to see the big
by the military demonstration teams— smiles on their faces when they land from
United States Air Force Thunderbirds and their flights over Seattle.
the Navy Blue Angels. At the air shows I These kids in the King and Pierce
loved to walk through the large military County public schools blow me away
cargo aircraft, climb into the fighter cock- with their knowledge of the basic princi-
pits and speak with the pilots. ples of flight, aviation pioneers, and air-
My parents nurtured my interest in craft types. Watching them learn from
aviation, science and space by visits to the Tuskegee Airmen is inspiring.
museums, air shows and wonderful pro- Today, I still feel joy whenever I fly by
grams in school, in the community and majestic Mt. Rainier on my way to land-
at our local Pacific Science Center. I ap- ing at either McChord AFB in my C- 17 or
plied for and was accepted to the U.S. Air Force Academy in in my Alaska Airlines 737 coming in to land at the Seattle-Colorado Springs, Colorado, as a 4th class cadet in 1986. In Tacoma Airport. I am humbled, awed and inspired, just as
1990, I graduated with my Bachelor’s of Science degree in Po- Michael Anderson was by the wonders of aviation.
litical Science and was commissioned as a 2nd Lt in the Unit- Now we all have the opportunity to give back and help pre-ed States Air Force. The following year, I graduated from U.S. serve his legacy.
Air Force pilot training at Laughlin AFB, Texas. I went from To help keep his dreams alive, a fundraising campaign is
admiring the Thunderbirds to performing loops, aileron rolls underway to create an interactive and meaningful memori-and formation flying in high performance T- 37 and T- 38 air- al of Michael Anderson at The Museum of Flight in Seattle.
craft! During my active duty Air Force career I became an in- Please send your contributions to Michael P. Anderson Memo-structor pilot in the KC-135 Stratotanker refueling aircraft and rial Statue Fund, c/o The Museum of Flight, 9404 East Mar-flew all over the world. I served in post Desert Storm opera- ginal Way South, Seattle, WA 98108-4079. ✈
tions, and in support of operations in Bosnia and Kosovo. In ...........................................................
2001 I joined the U.S. Air Force Reserve and I now fly the C- 17 For more information about the Michael Anderson Memorial
Globemaster, the Air Force’s premier airlift work horse. With Statue contact Kimberly Scott at firstname.lastname@example.org.